What Is Olive Leather?
Olive Tree Plantation
Olive leather is leather tanned with the leaves of an olive tree, this comes in three forms at present until further development is carried out, full aniline, semi aniline and pigmented leather.
Olive leather is normally free of aluminium’s and chromium, extracts are obtained from the olive tree leaves this is in a liquid form, these hides are then re tanned synthetically or by using a vegetable tanning method.
Olive leaves are normally burned as they have never been used before for tanning leather hides, but the mass waste is so high this could be used for tanning around 35% to 45% of the worlds production of leather, but these are just burnt by olive tree farmers. Again, a great business venture for anyone who owns an olive tree plantation, not only are these farmers earning from the olives, now they are earning from the leaves also.
Tanning with olive leaves is a very new process only discovered in 2011 / 2012, this has been possible using old age techniques of vegetable tannings with modern day science.
2014 was another breakthrough when BMW used this on the green i3 models they won the Automotive Interiors Expo Award for Production Interior Vehicle Design of the Year.
As REACH brings in more and more restrictions on worldwide uses of chemicals and the production of materials, could this be an innovative break through for more natural materials to be used like this in the future, using modern science capabilities with old age veg tanned bark systems? Fake leathers are very different to natural veg tanned materials.
The only major drawback with olive tree leaves is they can face issues from insects and lack of water, gain an extremely dry season and this could be very costly in many ways. This could also hinder the production of olive leather.