The International Council of Tanners (ICT) has warned that leather production in the European Union would become “nearly impossible” if proposed changes to regulations on the use of key chemicals come into effect, writes Leatherbiz.
Regulatory compliance with regard to environmental, worker and consumer protection and the promotion of best practice, are of paramount importance to the international leather community, ICT said. It added that its member associations fully support rigorous regulation to ensure that leather is manufactured to best science-based standards.
However, it said new restrictions currently under consideration on chromium VI, glutaraldehyde and bisphenol S and F would come with collateral damage to industrial sectors such as leather.
It said the proposed restrictions would mean that, globally, the manufacture of leather for the EU market would be seriously impacted, and in the EU, producing leather would become nearly impossible.
It called on EU authorities to forgo a “one-size-fits-all” approach to deciding limit values for chemicals, particularly if the impact on domestic and international manufacture and trade has not been thoroughly assessed.
“It should be noted that hides and skins will still be produced as by-products of the meat and dairy industries,” ICT said, “and valuable raw materials would simply become waste.”