Exotic Leather

Exotic Leather

For a long time, it has been debated that leather hides are a by-product of the meat industry, serving as an additional source of income and employment opportunities. While this holds true for cows, goats, and lambs—animals commonly consumed by humans—the discussion takes a different turn when we consider Alligators, Venomous Frogs, and Endangered Snakes. How do we then justify exotic leather as a by-product?

While it is true that in some regions, a small percentage of these animals may be consumed for meat, it is important to note that the quantity is insufficient for companies worldwide to use the by-product skin hides for their leathers.

So, how do global fashion houses obtain such significant amounts of exotic leather?

Because of Exotic Animal Farming.

An animal being bred in captivity or a farmland for the only purpose of being killed for its skin. The entire life of that animal is to eventually become a very expensive bag, a belt or a car seat for a sports car.

Exotic wildlife farms are aimed at producing large numbers of animals for their valuable skins. These breeding programs may involve species like crocodiles, pythons, lizards, and other reptiles known for their high-quality leather. Once the animals reach maturity, their skins are harvested through various methods, such as euthanising the animals and skinning them or removing the skin after the animal has been slaughtered.

The harvested skins undergo a tanning process to transform them into leather. Tanneries use chemical treatments to preserve the skins and give them the desired texture, durability, and appearance.

TL:DR: Animal is bred in captivity for the purpose of its skin hide and eventually killed at maturity. Something which is fully biodegradable is then lathered with chemicals to keep from decomposing.

Where does it get controversial:

Economic opportunities has been a long standing cushion used by governments and industries to defend environmental degradation. Proponents argue that exotic wildlife farming for leather provides employment opportunities, supports local economies, and reduces the demand for wild-caught animals. They believe that legal farming can help protect wild populations by meeting the market demand for exotic leather goods.

While conservationists worry that exotic wildlife farming could increase the demand for certain species and lead to illegal wildlife trade. This concern arises from the potential for farms to serve as a cover for laundering illegally sourced animal products into the market.

From a sustainability perspectives, exotic wildlife farming may lead to habitat destruction and loss of biodiversity. The intensive farming practices and large-scale breeding programs required to meet market demands put pressure on ecosystems, exacerbating the negative impact on the environment.

Exotic wildlife farming for leather is a complex and debatable practice with arguments for both its benefits and drawbacks. Balancing economic opportunities, animal welfare, conservation efforts, and environmental concerns is a challenging task.

But isn't Exotic Leather something we can collectively take a stand against?

By choosing alternative, sustainable materials and supporting ethical practices, we can contribute to a world where the desire for exotic leather is replaced by a collective commitment to preserve our planet's precious resources.

What do you think?

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