From 2 to 4 October 2019 at Lineapelle, an exhibition area called “The Leather (Recycling) Exhibition) will be set up (in pavilion 14) for the first time. It will focus on the circular economy in the tanning industry which, from the recovery of food production waste, produces one of the most precious materials for the manufacture of fashion and design accessories. Fulvia Bacchi, CEO of Lineapelle, tells us about it: “It’s a project that I really care about and follows on from the seminar that we organised as UNIC during last February’s Lineapelle: Circularity of Italian Leather – Sustainability.
It will host and explain the processes that are part of the circularity of the sector. In fact, potential waste (from shavings, cut-offs, fleshings, sludge) will be used to make gelatine for food, collagen for cosmetic creams and supplements, biostimulants / fertilizers for agriculture, roadbeds, pet toys and much more”.
How will the space be set up?
“Visitors will be able to learn about the companies involved in the recovery and recycling of waste and the Italian tanning services. The virtuous ability to manage tanning waste will also be underlined: 76% of this waste (and the percentage can even be as high as 84%, if we consider all the production waste) is destined to be recovered and, in this way, it becomes a raw material for other production processes or is transformed into fertiliser of high agronomic value, as well as proteins and collagen for food use.”
A lot of effort goes into making the tanning industry better known…
“It is a fundamental commitment that goes hand in hand with the communication campaign aimed at promoting leather, which we will launch during the fair.”
What other surprises will the event have in store?
“A beautiful exhibition of Japanese leather kimonos made for the centenary of the Tokyo Leather Fair and the second edition of Innovation Square, where we will discuss important issues: Look New – new aesthetic possibilities linked to the progress of chemistry and electronics; Fit for you – the push for customisation, and therefore the participation of the customer in the creation of the product; NanoTechTrends – intelligent materials and materials with new functions (stronger, lighter, conductive, waterproof) without sacrificing style; Wear(e)able – innovative product capabilities; GenerationBio – how to design a product by copying nature; Up!Cycle – the themes of the circular economy.
What about new trends in style?
“Visitors to the Area Trend of Lineapelle will be able to learn about the new theme of EQ – Emotional Quotient. Emotions will guide the choices that travel through algorithms. In the technological era, the Emotional Quotient is what will make the difference. The urgency of emotions will guide expression, even in fashion.
The leitmotif of the season, as far as materials are concerned, is the play between perfection and imperfection, which we no longer consider as opposing worlds, but rather as interacting with each other.”
What is the general outlook of the sector?
“We are more optimistic compared to the bad times in June. The year should end on an equal footing with the previous one, as certain fears seem to have been somewhat dispelled. The downturn persists in many compartments such as footwear and automotive. However, the holding of Lineapelle in terms of exhibitors (we recorded only a very slight drop in foreign participation in the components/accessories pavilions) makes us optimistic.”
What is the reason for this slowdown?
“Macroeconomic factors certainly have an impact and we are all aware of them. To this is added a brand policy that is unbalanced towards marginality, and therefore towards the choice of lower quality materials. This is strange given that we talk a lot about sustainability, we flaunt agreements like the Fashion Pact, and then we choose lower quality leather covered with plastic to hide the defects.”