1.1 Definition and scope of study
Leather is a material obtained by processing animal skins in order to make them rot-proof. The most common types of leather are those obtained from the scraps of cattle, fish, goat, sheep and pig skins, whereas kangaroo or ostrich skins are more rare. This material is characterized by high resistance and it is also particularly hygienic. Therefore, it is normally used in the manufacture of products such as footwear or clothing, especially in winter, since leather also has excellent thermal insulating properties.
The global leather market is expected to reach a value of over $620 billion by 2028, thus balancing the negative effect that the Covid-19 pandemic has had on its growth. In particular, the market is expected to grow at an annual rate of around 6% driven primarily by continued product innovation that will enable the launch of numerous new products by companies operating in this area.
The Italian leather market holds a world leadership position in terms of production and treatment of finished material since, as far as the actual production of leather is concerned, the market is highly globalized due to the continuous search for the cheapest possible leather.
Leather processing in Italy is concentrated in three industrial macro-districts: the most important district is the one in Tuscany, being the largest and most advanced; then there are the districts in Veneto and Campania.
The Italian leather market stands out in particular for its high capacity for innovation, technological advancement and particular attention to quality. Despite the strong internationalization process that this market is undergoing, the tendency within the Italian market to be mainly made up of small family-run companies seems to continue.
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