ROCHESTER, Mich.–(BUSINESS WIRE)– Pangea commits to a sustainable future, driving excellence in leather production alongside the Leather Working Group (LWG) – a community of auditors recognized by brands such as BMW, Cargill, Ikea, and Nike.
As LWG defines best practices and gold standards for the industry, Pangea is proud to help raise the bar. LWG audits cover 17 major sections including incoming material traceability, environmental management systems (EMS), and energy consumption. After being audited in all 17 categories, Pangea was awarded the highest available, gold standard in Leon and Nuevo Laredo, Mexico.
The Pangea team prepared with a voluntary gap analysis in all facilities throughout 2022, with official audits scheduled throughout 2023. All applicable manufacturing sites expect to achieve gold status by end of 2023, with Mexican operations already awarded and complete.
“Auditing continuous improvement and sustainable efforts is new for us, but a sustainable way of life is not,” says Director of Innovation & Sustainability, Roger Pinto. “Automotive leather is much cleaner a business than people think. Auditors were wowed by the fact that Pangea has such high chemical standards. Some of the old school tanneries you see on in the media just don’t represent how we do business. Consider the extensive list of restricted substances, an area that is not a predominant risk for Pangea because our diligent chemical supplier screening process, and the regulations in which they uphold. We have hundreds of data points showing that chromium VI is not present in our leather or in our processes, yet auditors still focus heavily on it. Some less advanced manufacturers, typically in the fashion industry, simply have yet not evolved like automotive leather has. I am proud to work for an organization that is continuing to reinvent such an authentic industry.”
Although not yet required by LWG, Pangea also went through a traceability audit, a certification area majority of our supply base upholds. Supplier and sub-contractor visits were also conducted this January. LWG was very pleased with the incoming traceability evidence provided by Pangea.
LWG is a group of technical experts who developed a protocol alongside leather producers, consumer brands and industry experts [World Wildlife Fund, Textile Exchange, UNIDO]. Additionally, flagship versions of the auditing protocol were peer reviewed by the World Wildlife Fund US and other important, environmental NGO’s.