Global Change Award is an innovation challenge initiated by H&M Foundation, aiming to make fashion circular.
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Grape leather

Using leftovers from winemaking to create fully vegetal leather.

Awarded: €300,000 Year: 2017

In addition to requiring the lives of millions of animals annually, animal leather production affects the environment by using acids, heavy metals and large amounts of water for tanning. Production of synthetic leather alternatives might save the lives of animals, but generates pollution with synthetic polymers, plasticizers and solvents. Architect Gianpiero Tessitore was working on his furniture designs when he realized that the fashion industry still can’t offer a truly green alternative to animal and synthetic leather.

Together with industrial chemist Francesco Merlino, he embarked on a mission to find one. After three years of research they discovered that the fibers and oils from winemaking leftovers is ideal for making 100 percent vegetal leather.

Owners of idea: Rosa Rossella Longobardo, Gianpiero Tessitore, Francesco Merlino and Valentina Longobardo
Country: Italy