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EUREKA - Training Multilingual Leather Technical Dictionary 

EUREKA is a computer based glossary of leather terms providing easy access to 9 linguistic versions of about 2300 terms, clearly defined in English. With interactive and multi-media support, this tool fosters the understanding of the terms, and improves communication with partners speaking a different language.

Sponsored by the EU Commission in the framework of a Leonardo project, EUREKA was developed by  8 leather research and training centres (AIICA/ES, BLC/UK, CTC/FR, CTIC/PT, DTI/DK, ELKEDE/GR, LGR/DE, SSIP/IT and ICPI/Romania), working under the umbrella of their European trade association (COTANCE/BE). 

EUREKA provides operators with an innovative training tool that will improve very specific skills in the European leather industry. Each term can be seen as a database where information is expandable. Starting from an initial set of « Picture Files », users can expand the database by adding other files, such as additional pictures, short trailers, sounds or Word documents. This self-training activity can be performed in open and distant learning systems by linking up to individual or collective sources of intelligence (Tanning Schools, TANNET, Web sources, etc.). As a result it provides every user with a rational, intellectual framework for Continuing Vocational Training (CVT).

EUREKA promotes lifelong learning and training in that it constitutes a personal and upgradable database concentrating technical and managerial intelligence that the user can tailor and adjust continuously according to the development of his career in the leather sector.

Linguistic versions available: English, French, Italian, Spanish, German, Greek, Portuguese, Danish, Romanian.

To order a copy, download this form, print it, and send it to COTANCE by email (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ) or fax (+32.2.512.91.57). 


SILIC-SALT (2002-2005)

The general objectives of Silic Salt were to develop and (partly) implement new curing methods for freshly flayed hides and skins, whereat the common curing salt (i.e. NaCl) will be replaced by alkali silicates. Remarkably less silicates will be required for curing and a significant reduction of salt content in treated tannery effluents will be achieved. This reduction will make such effluents re-utilisable for agricultural purposes. The innovative techniques will only be in the chemical process and will not require investment on new tannery equipment. Therefore, all tanneries in developing countries will be able to implement these procedures, especially since all auxiliaries are not expensive. In addition, the results from a CRAFT – project have indicated a better exhaustion of later applied tannery auxiliaries. This lead to less contaminated tannery effluents and reduced sludge volumes from effluent treatment.

At the end of all beamhouse–processes, untanned, silicate-stabilised pelts will be obtained. Since these pelts seem to be storable over longer periods, they can be seen as new starting material for European tanneries. Interesting in this respect is that, so far, only pre-tanned starting materials (mainly chrome-tanned wet blues) were exported. With silicate-stabilised pelts, any required tannage (with chrome, synthetic and/ or vegetable tannins) can then be carried out.

The project partners were COTANCE and GERIC members VAL/Austria, and LGR/Germany, as well as CLRI (Central Leather Research Institute, India), BLRI (Bangladeshi Leather Research Institute), BLCT (Bangladesh College for Leather Technology), Lederfabrik Vogl GmbH, Dr. Boehme KG as well as Mr. R. Daniels as an independent expert. An Observer Group includes ERRC (Eastern Regional Research Centre USA), CSIR-Australia, the Tokyo Metropolitan Leather Institute and the University of Chengdu-China.

The project started in 2002 and was completed in 2005.

Social Dialogue: Better Articulation

Better Articulation of the Social Sectoral Dialogue at EU/National level

Early 2003, the Social Partners of the Leather industry at European level submitted a project proposal on the topic of “articulation” of the social dialogue in the sector and exploring how it can be improved. The proposal was approved for funding under the EU B3-4000 budget line.

Experts from both sides of the industry were identified by the Social Partners for participating in an exercise that would 
-          map the present situation of the social dialogue at various levels through individual or joint national reports based on a common template;
-          examine a report gathering all the information obtained from the industry (both sides) and from other sources (comparisons with other dialogues, inter-professional dialogue); 
-          discuss in a specific workshop the conclusions to be drawn from this report and articulate recommendations for follow-up to be submitted to the Committee of the Social Sectoral Dialogue Tanning/Leather.



Wasserglass (2001-2003)

Developed under the CRAFT programme, the Wasserglass project aims at the optimization and transfer of the procedure promoting Wasserglass (soluble alkali silicates) for the shaving and liming processes. It started in December 2001 and ended in December 2003. Coordinated by COTANCE, it was developed by the following partners: VOGL, VAL, LGR, SSIP.


Tanweek (2002)

In conjunction with the ESTW, COTANCE developed Tanweek to highlight how European tanners use science and technology innovations in practical applications that significantly enhance the lives of both tannery employees and the general public. The main event of Tanweek was an open conference in Bologna, in the framework of Lineapelle, the world’s largest leather fair. The conference was also a showcase for the information materials produced during the year:

A 12-page colour brochure explains the impact of science on the tanning industry, and shows how the latest R&D breakthroughs contribute to a cleaner environment. The brochure is available in English, Greek, Italian, Portuguese, Spanish, French and Swedish. 
A video illustrates how science has improved the production of leather in Europe, highlighting the environmental benefits and how they positively affect the public.