GLCC discusses labelling of bio-fabricated materials

Hong Kong
Published:  23 March, 2018

A meeting of the Global Leather Coordinating Committee (GLCC), comprising of the International Council of Tanners (ICT), the International Union of Leather Technologists and Chemists Society (IULTCS), and hosted by the International Council of Hides, Skins, and Leather Traders Association (ICHSLTA), took place in Hong Kong on March 15, during the APLF Leather fair.

There were 17 representatives present from the three groups. A wide range of industry issues and topics were discussed and a number of common action items were agreed.

Among the topics considered at the meeting was the implication and labelling regime of bio-fabricated materials. As the primary international policy-making body for the industry, it was agreed that the GLCC will become more active in the ongoing debate about the labelling of this material globally. Furthermore, the Committee will seek to engage many of the negative claims the firms developing these materials tend to make about the leather industry in promotion of their products. 

The Committee also received updates on a variety of leather labelling issues in jurisdictions around the world. The GLCC presses for clear and accurate regulations and enforcement of leather labelling in all countries so consumers around the world are not misled about the products they purchase.

In addition, the GLCC continues to monitor initiatives that seek to ascribe an environmental footprint of leather, such as the European modelling of the Product Environmental Footprint for Leather and the FAO facilitated LEAP (Livestock Environmental Assessment and Performance) Partnership. GLCC delegates also continue to monitor the work of industry standards and certification bodies that regulate the trade, such as the Leather Working Group (LWG), Zero Discharge of Hazardous Chemicals (ZDHC), and the Responsible Leather initiative, to ensure that guidelines are fair, not duplicative, and take into full account the specific requirements of the hides, skins and leather industry.

Finally, the GLCC invited the leadership of Leather Naturally to discuss its new marketing initiatives to promote leather to brands and consumers. A number of areas were identified at the meeting where the GLCC’s constituency would co-operate with Leather Naturally to enhance and further the common message of the leather industry globally.

The next GLCC meeting will be hosted by ICT in Shanghai at the All China Leather Exhibition (ACLE) in late August.