Undoubtedly, fashion industry is moving towards sustainability, is more and more designers are starting to choose alternatives to genuine leather. However, there are some hidden problems associated with this path. And the main one is that not all vegan leather or so-called "eco" leather is that environmentally friendly as it is promoted.
Most of natural leather alternatives are made from polyurethane (PU) or polyvinyl chloride (PVC). It is not hard to understand that production of barely any synthetic material is not good for the environment. Production of PVC requires petroleum and the production process itself requires a lot of energy; thus, making it dependant on fossil fuels. Moreover, the process is associated with pollution by such dangerous substances as dioxins, which are toxic to humans and animals. Sadly, dioxins remain in the environment even after production process is over.
The end of life of synthetic leather is also not environmentally friendly, since PVC does not decompose like natural leather, hence releasing toxic chemicals in water and soil.
That is why not all vegan leather is better than genuine one in terms of environmental issues. But there are some truly amazing options!
For example, Pinatex material that is an absolutely environmentally friendly alternative. The material is made from pineapple leaves fibre that is simply by-product from pineapple farms. But not only this unique material is made from waste, but the whole production process is not associated with use of toxic ingredients.
We are proud to carry collection of shoes made from Pinatex. Explore it here: https://tooche.me/collections/shoes/vegan-shoes