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Future trends in leather industry

It is expected that raw materials coming from animals such as buffalo, yak, camel, ostrich, deer and
kangaroo, which are available in limited or very small amounts, will become increasingly important.
Estimates put these raw materials at around 1% of total world supply, although a figure closer to 2%
may be more accurate.
pigs and poultry will increase in importance compared to ruminants;
• there will be a substantial rise in the use of cereal-based feeds.
These trends raise numerous issues for the leather industry:
• what further help can be given to increase the efficiency of farming in Africa in order to improve the
off-take and collection of hides and skins?
• what needs to be done to improve and manage the quality of raw material at all stages – farming,
slaughter, and tanning?
• Africa appears to be one place where land remains available; is the continent suitable for herd
growth to make up for lack of land elsewhere?
• hides and skins from camels, kangaroo, deer, yak and other less mainstream animals are likely to
expand their presence in the leather supply chain; the industry needs to learn how to manage both the
technical issues and the potential environmental problems arising from the use of these materials;
• final product design for footwear, bags, automobile seats, etc. will need to accommodate hides and
skins with surface damage which are otherwise of excellent quality.
Overall, those involved in all aspects of the leather industry can be expected to spend more time ensuring
that they have secure raw material supplies.

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