APLF 'real leather' debate update

22 March 2011



APLF – Materials, Manufacturing & Technology (MM&T) are hosting an open debate entitled ‘What’s in a name? – the correct terminology for synthetics and leather’. The event will be held on Day 2 of the up-coming exhibition in Hong Kong.


This is an important industry topic as a substantial number of leather producers are increasingly dissatisfied that suppliers of man-made materials are using the word leather in naming their products. And, moreover, may be doing so deliberately to deceive buyers into believing that they are purchasing real leather when this is not the case.

In Brazil, under pressure from leather manufacturers, the word leather may not be used when describing any man-made or synthetic material. To do so could be a chargeable offence.

The debate promises to be lively, controversial and possibly heated. In the time allotted it cannot answer all the issues, but it can help define the terms for further discussion leading to a format that all the parties involved can sign up to.

The 90-minute event will be chaired by Mike Redwood, a well-known and respected industry figure, and include a panel representing both sides of the issue.

Anyone wishing to join the debate may do so.

Priority seating will be given to those who have pre-registered.

Date: March 31 2011

Time: 11:30 – 13:00

Moderator: Mike Redwood

Panellists representing tanners will include:

Gustavo Quijano Gonzalez of Cotance (Europe): Representing the European Union’s view

Yves Morin of CTC (France): On terms and meanings lost in translation from Chinese to English

Wolfgang Goerlich of ICT and CICB (Brazil): On Brazilian law related to ‘synthetic leather’ being an illegal term and to the ICT position

Representing synthetic materials manufacturers include:

Artidoro Doriano Baldi of A.P.I, Italy

Michael Cheng of Wenzhou Heli Synthetic Leather, China

The synthetic materials manufacturer representatives will explain the technology of their product and their view of how to name it using a technical term or a brand name.

Participation is free of charge but to ensure a seat, please contact Ms. Chi On KWOK at [email protected]



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