First formed in 2005, Leather Working Group was created as a collaborative initiative between footwear, apparel and upholstery brands and leather manufacturers, including founders: adidas, Clarks, Ikea, Nike, Marks & Spencer, New Balance, Timberland, and PrimeAsia Leather Company.
Since then, our organization has evolved to become the world's largest leather industry-specific stakeholder organization, representing over 2000 stakeholders in over 60 countries. Our stakeholders include:
- Brands / Retailers
- Leather manufacturers
- Traders of raw, part-processed and finished material
- Suppliers to the leather industry (e.g. chemical producers, machinery suppliers)
- Groups, NGOs, and associations
- Finished product manufacturers
As an organization, we are dedicated to providing value to our stakeholders and working with the industry to have the most meaningful impact. Our Executive Committee (EC) is elected to represent sectors within the leather industry and provide strategic guidance. Several sub-groups advise the Executive Committee on specific topics, including traceability, technical audit development, and environmental impact, and the LWG Team runs our day-to-day operations.
We work across multiple different areas of focus with the ultimate aim of reducing the impact of the leather industry. Find out more about our work areas below.
We're driving transformational change in the leather industry. Find out more about our mission now.
We offer audit standards to assess manufacturers within the leather supply chain
Understanding the environmental impact of leather is crucial. See more about our projects here.
See more about our approach to traceability in the leather supply chain through LWG certification.
The LWG Standards recognize world-leading social certification schemes.
Ensuring best practices in the procurement, use, storage, and disposal of chemical substances.
See how we deliver on the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (UNSDGs)
Our mission is to reduce the impact of the leather supply chain through industry collaboration, accountability through auditing, and the provision of science-based data. We will achieve these aims through greater collaboration; through the provision of detailed information on key up-stream and down-stream topics; and the promotion of LWG certification using data-driven insights.
We envision a leather industry dedicated to sustainable and responsible business. We hope to achieve this through:
- Full supply chain transparency
- Minimal environmental impact
- Deforestation and conversion free (DCF) supply chains
- Industry cross-collaboration