This is an advertorial provided by Testex.

What is your philosophy and strategy for sustainable production?

Our philosophy has always been to offer products and services that fully satisfy the customer and at the same time respect people and the environment. In addition, our corporate strategy is to always look for new production processes. We pay close attention to incorporating new components from suppliers that help us pursue and achieve our goals.

How do you think the leather industry has evolved, and what can be expected in the forthcoming years?

I think the Italian leather industry has greatly improved thanks to the efforts of leather chemistry combined with those of leather producers. For the future, we can forecast a cleaner and greener horizon for the leather industry.

What made you decide to have your products tested for harmful substances and certified according to OEKO-TEX® LEATHER STANDARD, and what are the benefits?

We have known OEKO-TEX® for a long time and we were very pleased to finally get the chance to obtain the OEKO-TEX® LEATHER STANDARD certification in 2019. There are various regulations that must be followed, including tests that must be carried out before some of these products can be exported. With the LEATHER STANDARD certification, we have solved most of these problems.

Unfortunately, there are still some brands/companies that only accept their own tests carried out in their own laboratories. We can offer our customers products that fulfil the requirements of OEKO-TEX® LEATHER STANDARD, which is a globally standardised, independent testing and certification system. This makes us more confident when we present and sell our products.

Do your customers see the positive changes after becoming OEKO-TEX® LEATHER STANDARD certified in terms of brand image?

Yes, our company regularly receives positive feedback from customers since we obtained the OEKO-TEX® LEATHER STANDARD.

How do you assess OEKO-TEX® LEATHER STANDARD compared to other industry tools?

As far as we are concerned, we started with OEKO-TEX® certification because it has been in the most demand by our customers over the years. And then, over time, other instruments were implemented in the industry, and we think they are all valid vehicles and mechanisms to comply with world standards of sustainability.

You recently became OEKO-TEX® STeP certified. What advantages have this certification brought you in addition to the LEATHER STANDARD?

Since becoming OEKO-TEX® LEATHER STANDARD certified for our leather products, we also wanted to communicate to our customers the sustainability of our production by implementing OEKO-TEX® SteP. We opted for SteP, because it seemed to us the most complete certification system. This way we can give two securities – one for our products and one for our production site. It has been a challenge for us to become the first Italian tannery to get the SteP certification.

We wanted to make our production processes more transparent and continuously improve in the areas of environment, social responsibility, quality, health and safety with the help of the SteP requirements. This allows us to offer our customers the best possible and most up-to-date products they can get from our tannery. In a further step, we are planning to implement the OEKO-TEX® MADE IN GREEN label. Moreover, we have also applied for Leather Working Group (LWG) membership.

What were your impressions of the SteP by OEKO-TEX® certification process and what were the challenges?

It is a beneficial system which allows us to have more control of the production and it helps us to focus our mission on sustainability and on lowering our impact on the environment. Since our production building is already getting on in years, we had to adapt it to the SteP requirements. We also had to standardise the production process to make it more transparent and to regulate it internally. These points were a big issue and a change for our company.

What innovative technologies are installed in your facilities to enhance production efficiency, save resources, reduce consumption, encourage circularity and reduce costs?

Having undergone the SteP certification process, we are ready right now to improve on our mission and set new goals to become more sustainable. We clearly need to reset our automatic system of retanning and dyeing leathers and we are already working on this issue. Additionally, we are ready to set further goals for the future. Regarding chemical management, we have introduced a database to control quantities and stocks of chemicals. Thanks to SteP, we are considering using a special management system that also controls the recipes.

How do you comment on your experience in working with OETI in this OEKO-TEX® certification?

OETI has been very helpful throughout the whole certification process, giving us advice and supporting us at every level of the various challenges we have faced. Plus, we know we can always ask them any questions we may have. We would like to thank the whole OETI team!



TESTEX, an official representative of OEKO-TEX®, is a globally operating and independent Swiss testing and certification institute. Its expertise lies in testing, analysing and certifying textiles and leather. In addition to the headquarters in Switzerland, the TESTEX Group, including its subsidiary OETI, now operates with 30 branches across North America, Europe and Asia and over 350 employees worldwide.