Danish fashion label Ganni is planning to phase out leather by 2023 and gradually eliminate it completely from its ranges. This is despite the fact that lambskin pieces are one of Ganni’s most high-priced and profitable categories. But “selling leather products, although highly profitable, will soon be as outdated as smoking on TV,” said Ganni founder Nicolaj Reffstrup of the decision.
To achieve this goal, the Copenhagen-based brand has partnered with Italian manufacturer Vegea to offer eight pairs of shoes made with Vegea, a grape skin alternative to traditional leather, as part of its Spring/Summer 2022 collection.
“We’re phasing out leather completely by 2023, as it conflicts with our efforts to minimise our impact due to high levels of methane emissions from the livestock,” explained Reffstrup in a press release. “Introducing Vegea, a plant-based alternative made from agricultural waste, is a step in the direction towards more responsible collection.”
Ganni previously experienced difficulties finding alternatives to conventional leathers due to quality concerns as well as high levels of plastic in available materials. Vegea has gone through rigorous testing and lives up to the brand’s high standards of durability and design while having a relatively low amount of plastic compared to market standards, Ganni said.
Vegea is an innovative material using leftover grape skins from winemaking, vegetable oils and natural fibres from agriculture. Using leftover material helps keep waste from ending up in landfills. In addition, no toxic chemicals, heavy metals or other dangerous solvents are used in the REACH compliant production process. Vegea has a high proportion of plant-based content, with 55 percent consisting of a bio-compound (vegetable oil and grapes) and 45 percent of water-based polyurethane (PU).
Starting Spring/Summer 2022, Ganni has committed to ending its use of animal leather in all ready-to-wear clothing, a former profitable category for the brand. Ganni is working on phasing out conventional leather in accessories and shoes as well, planning to completely discontinue the use of animal leather by 2023.
The eight styles made from Vegea will be available at Ganni.com and at select retailers from early 2022. The brand has not yet disclosed prices.