Is Snakehive #sustainable?
In a world where sustainability development is becoming a priority, consumers are more informed and do their independent research, how can Snakehive as a leather goods company claim to be sustainable?
When thinking of investing in a leather product, sustainability is not the first thing on our minds. Leather goods are synonymous with quality, durability and luxury, but it is also synonymous with sustainability.
A common misconception is that the only leather goods we should use are hand-me-downs, so we don’t waste the product since 'an animal died to create it'. This is maybe the most common myth. Usually, these hand-me-downs last for generations due to leather’s durability and inherited quality as a material. It’s true, leather has a rich heritage but that doesn’t mean that it’s not sustainable.
Here at Snakehive we take sustainability seriously and want to be a valuable part of a circular economy, In our journey of striving to always be better we have our incredible ‘Almost Perfect' line which re-purposes used cases or cases with manufacturing defects and saves them from ending up in a landfill but let’s get into the leather!
So, what are the facts?
What if we told you that not using leather is wasteful? Yes, it’s true! Leather is a natural product that would otherwise go to waste if not used in some way.
Leather is a strong material, made by a process called ‘tanning’ which is a treatment applied to hides and skins that are a by-product of the food industry. Responsible leather manufacturing is here! Like a treasured pair of jeans, well-made leather lasts for a very long time and, unlike most man-made or synthetic materials, gets better with age, developing a depth of patina and wear pattern that is unique to the user.
Responsible leather production is based on science, it's strictly regulated, and independently audited in accordance with international standards.
Leather is typically made from hides and skins that account for less than 1% to 2% of the animal's total value. Ranchers don't raise or kill animals for calfskin and utilizing less cowhide doesn't imply that fewer dairy cattle are raised.
Conclusion: Leather is a sustainable product and a sustainable option.
Diving deeper into leather's sustainability as a material.
Depending on the type, leather will biodegrade in 10 to 50 years, whereas plastic and materials based on fossil fuels will take 500 to 1000 years. That time is being further reduced by industry-innovative new technologies, allowing designers to create products with long-life repairable solutions and natural end-of-life disposal in mind from the start.
Over 270 million cow hides are recycled annually in the modern leather industry. Without the ability of the leather industry to convert them into leather, almost 7 million tonnes of these by-products of the food sector would be wasted and disposed of in a landfill with severe biological and environmental consequences.
Fun fact: The majority of leather is made from the hides and skins of livestock raised for food.
Why choose leather? Here's why.
Leather has some amazing qualities that make it a great choice! Much like your favourite boots, your leather phone case, eyeglasses case or wallet, leather can protect your valuable items, because as per our mantra 'It’s what’s inside that counts'. Leather can be made to absorb water, resist water or be completely waterproof. This is one of leather’s unique properties, allowing leather to absorb moisture and release it into the environment over time.
Leather is also malleable and aesthetically pleasing. The capacity of leather to be moulded into different shapes is another quality that makes it such a popular material. It will hold its new shape as needed and can be modified to either become stiffer or more flexible. Lastly, we can all agree that like a good book or a cup of coffee, the colour, texture, feel and fragrance, adds to the luxurious experience of owning a leather product, making this commodity incredibly rare and costly.