Liam Dillon Design has consciously chosen to use vegetable tanned kangaroo hide.
Liam Dillon Design respect the journey our products take, from start to finish. Just as we age, grow and change, so does the leather we use. Vegetable-tanned kangaroo leather is a naturally biodegradable product that is rich, soft, warm and will age over time with you.
About 90% of all leather products on the market are made from chrome-tanned leather. This procedure uses a chromium sulphate solution to speed up the tanning process, and during this process the leather turns into an un-biodegradable product. When done badly and produced in countries where environmental regulations do not exist or are not enforced, chrome-tanned leather is extremely harmful for the environment.
Vegetable-tanned leather is a completely natural process that takes time and skill. It is produced using the tannins found in the leaves and bark of many plants; most often from oaks, chestnut or wattle tress.
With the use of chemicals and acids, chrome tanning can be completed in one day, while vegetable tanning can take up to 60 days. Much skill is needed to produce and perfect the product, and the natural materials can be unpredictable. Vegetable tanning and dying is an ancient craft that has been passed down for thousands of years.
Due to the tough and arid conditions of the Australian landscape, kangaroos have naturally evolved to be a highly resilient and sustainable animal. They consume 87% less water than sheep, use 1/3 of the amount of energy and produce virtually no methane. Due to kangaroo’s lean, full fibre skin composition, the leather produced is the strongest weight for weight leather available. It is internationally sought after for the use of football and hiking boots, motorcycle garments, golf gloving and more.
For the last 30 years the Australian government has monitored the population of kangaroos. Over this time they have developed sophisticated and accurate methods to do so. Kangaroos, as well as humans, are one of the very few species that have regular census of their population. Certain breeds populate at unsustainable levels, and this high-density causes both the animal and the environment to suffer. Because of this the Australian government initiates a cull every year. From the statistics acquired, the State’s National Park authorities produce a detailed management plan that must be approved by the Federal Conservation department. A quota is then set for certain breeds to be culled in their native habitat by skilled and licensed hunters, under very strict guidelines. This is all done to maintain a healthy kangaroo population and sustain the native environment.
While it is said that cow leather is a by-product of the meat industry, it has been estimated that 10% of a cow’s value is in its skin, meaning that it is extremely valuable to the process. Kangaroo leather is 100% a by-product of government enforced culling, meaning that making use of the skin is both ethical and sustainable.
As Kangaroo farming is not allowed, all kangaroo leather comes from wild Australian animals. During a kangaroos life they fight with each other and bash around the harsh Australian bush, which results in marks and scars on the leather. This gives evidence that the leather used is from a wild creature whose history we can only imagine.
Please note: due to all these factors, products may vary in both colour and markings to products seen in images provided.