Leather&Luxury interviews Curtiba Industria Conciaria
A few days before the start of Lineapelle, Leather & Luxury had a chance to reflect with Giovanni Valori of Curtiba on sustainability and vegetalized leathers, the new flagship of his company.
What led you to add the line of vegetalized leathers to your extensive offerings?
We started developing the product two or three years ago; we have had it in production for a very short time. For us it is a gamble and an investment whose fruits we have yet to see. The big brands we work with are increasingly looking for a chrome free product so we thought we would go further and create a "vegetalized" leather. So it is a choice that continues in our philosophy of sustainability but also anticipates, if you will, the demands of the market. In order to remain internationally competitive, we Italian tanners need a lot of creativity and a lot of technology to improve the sustainability characteristics of leather more and more. Our offerings must meet the needs of our customers in an increasingly attentive way, including research and analysis of new fashion trends.
And how do vegetalized leathers differ from simply chrome-free leathers?
The new "vegetalized" tanning system starts from a leather already tanned without chrome. This makes it possible to obtain a "vegetalized," or mixed-tanned, article that does not use chromium and is therefore much more environmentally friendly. Vegetalized is full-bodied, uniform and of the round hand, it has a "sound" and aesthetic impact quite similar to vegetable tanning. Then with finishing, one can accentuate the "aged" look typical of the vegetal look, for example, with a clouded or buffed effect, or leave it natural.
Unlike vegetable-tanned leathers, vegetalized leather retains the look, but has the advantage of better resistance to physical tests as requested by customers. This type of leather can also be considered 100 percent environmentally sustainable as it has almost no impact on the environment.