How new consumer power is defining activity in the tannery

Rachel Garwood, Mike Redwood

Research output: Contribution to Book/ReportConference Contribution


Leather used to be essential to the functioning of society. It was a ubiquitous material vital for everyday life. From clothing, footwear and gloves through transportation, military activity and many other uses leather was a strategic material.
In recent years with the rise of other materials such as new technical textiles and plastics leather has become more of a luxury item. The manufacturer and the consumer have a choice of materials in most purchases. What is more as an outcome of the rise in consumer power over the last fifteen years, accelerated by the increased use of the Internet, consumer opinion has started to impact directly on the way leather is processed. Increasingly buying a pair of leather shoes constitutes taking an ecological position.
Drawing on ongoing research on why consumers like leather and options for reversible tannages this paper will examine the changes happening in the making process which are now even more driven by consumer power than by legislative compliance.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Textile Institute World Conference Proceedings: Centenary World Conference, 2010
Place of PublicationManchester
PublisherTextile Institute
ISBN (Print)9780956641915
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2010
EventTextile Institute Centenary Conference: Textiles: a Global Vision - Manchester, United Kingdom
Duration: 3 Nov 20104 Nov 2010


ConferenceTextile Institute Centenary Conference: Textiles: a Global Vision
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom


  • Leather
  • Footwear
  • Leather goods
  • Consumer power
  • Environmentalism


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