Clariant’s EasyWhite Tan process — leaner, cleaner and safer
The first major advance since the advent of chrome-based tanning revolutionized the industry back in the late 1800s, the new EasyWhite Tan process delivers a ground-breaking alternative to conventional methods based on metals (such as chrome, which accounts for 85% of global leather production), phenols or aldehydes, or on vegetable extracts.
Its global introduction follows trials by major tanners around the world over the last two years.
EasyWhite Tan is suited for all major end-uses, including the shoe upper leather sector and for the production of automotive upholstery, the latter at present largely dependent on chrome-free aldehyde tanning.
Based on Clariant’s liquid, non-hazardous Granofin® Easy F-90, a synthesized organic self-reactive compound, EasyWhite Tan has major advantages for the global industry:
Leaner: eliminates both pickle and basification process stages, uses less chemicals
Cleaner: without pickle – no salt, cleaner and easier to treat effluent
Safer: simplified processing, fewer possibilities for error, reliable process
For the processing of 1,000 wet salted hides, water consumption falls from 12,000 litres to 6,000; chemicals required are reduced from six to one; 1,000kg of sodium chloride is eliminated; and process controls go from eight to two; and process time is reduced from around 14 hours to eight.
Major tanners and manufacturers of finished leather products have welcomed the new development. The Italian Dani Group, recently recognized by the Italian government for its innovation, produces automotive and furniture leather under the most stringent testing conditions.
“It was difficult to imagine that a fundamental advance in tanning had been achieved but Clariant has done just that. We have been delighted by the results and are also pleased that we can offer our customers an even better product than they demand,” states Giancarlo Dani, CEO of the group. This is a view shared by Ecco Leather, a major leather producer and worldwide footwear brand. “Ecco Leather was very happy to see, finally, an innovation in tanning. Our worry in past years has been that the industry has been stuck in a traditional way of working and did not seek any innovation. Clariant proves that tanning can be different too,” says Panos Mytaros, Ecco Leather’s Managing Director.
Clariant is an internationally active specialty chemical company based in Muttenz near Basel. The group owns over 100 companies worldwide and employed approx. 16,200 employees as of December 31, 2010.
In the financial year 2010, Clariant produced a turnover in excess of CHF 7.1 billion. Clariant is divided into twelve business units: Additives; Catalysis & Energy; Detergents & Intermediates; Emulsions; Functional Materials; Industrial & Consumer Specialties; Leather Services; Masterbatches; Oil & Mining Services;
Paper Specialties; Pigments; Textile Chemicals.
Josina van der Velden
Bergen op Zoom
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