Not a By-Product
The UK leather industry is worth billions of pounds each year. An animal’s skin makes up 7-10 per cent of his or her total worth. By buying leather goods you are supporting the meat industry and the slaughter of animals.
Leather comes from both beef and dairy cattle, who are slaughtered while still young and whose lives are entirely under human control. Beef cattle live simply to eat, grow and be killed. Dairy cattle are among the most exploited animals on the planet. They are forced to spend their lives in a constant cycle of pregnancy and milking – often at the same time. Their babies are taken away at birth and hundreds of thousands are simply shot! Every time you buy something made of leather, you are supporting this cruelty.
Leather is animal hide (skin) that has been chemically treated to prevent it degrading and rotting. The UK throws away two million pairs of shoes every week – those made of leather sit in landfills, unable to decompose due to the tanning process. The toxic chemicals used in manufacturing damage the environment and increase tannery workers’ risk of developing various cancers. Most leather tanning takes place in developing countries, where labour costs are low and environmental regulations lax. Some tanneries simply allow their effluent to flow into rivers untreated, polluting fresh water supplies with toxic chemicals. Local villagers, who depend upon the water for washing and drinking, can suffer serious medical problems. You can end your part in this cruel trade right now by boycotting leather! There are loads of great alternatives available, please visit our list of leather-free stockists.
End the cruelty.