I came across this company producing “vegan” leather from cactus: https://www.facebook.com/desserto.pelle
Their presentation video is typical of a scam to me. It does not really present the quality of their product, but green-bash another industry to buy themselves an environmentally sound image.
But it’s lies, only lies.
No industry ever that used leather in a way or another (fashion, cars…) has any farmer grow animals for their skin only. First of all, there is the meat and milk industry, which raises animals for alimentation. The skin is what is left of the animal once it has been consumed.
Second is the (very few comparatively) farms where animals are raised specifically for their skin, but you can be sure the meat is not thrown away and is joining the food chain as well, because that would otherwise be a waste of income, a waste period.
So what this company is proposing, is to just leave the meat/milk industry continue to grow steadily as they have been for quite long now, and using extra land to produce leather from plants.
So not only this vegan leather scam increases the farming land used overall, but if successful it will take away a market for meat/milk farmers to make the best use of all the byproducts of their activity, actually increasing their environmental impact as they will be left with more waste, less income and overall a less efficient business that does not make the most out of their “products” with the unsold skins for the leather industry.
Don’t be a stupid fool believing that everything labelled vegan is better for the environment. It’s not. Vegetables uses a lot more land for a lot less calories. They uses a lot more pesticides than any meat or milk farm, which can in fact perfectly go with none at all (althouh many still boost their meadows for higher productivity). Animals farms can keep their meadows trees, it does not prevent grass from growing. Veggies farms usually cut everything down, lowering CO2 absorption capacity further more. Veggies farms uses a fuckton of greenhouses to grow crops sooner in the season, or crops not doing so well for the local climate, and they’re made of either plastic (ha-ha) or glass (which is, let me remind you, need to be melted and consume a lot of gaz and reject a lot of CO2, not to mention raw material extraction….).
Animal farms are not perfect, far from it, but their environmental impact is not as huge as some lobbying vegans are keen to pretend. In most case there is just meadows and one barn construction. Most of the pollution from these farms could easily be lowered, if people just accepted that the very low price they pay for food is not realistic and the reason animal raising is polluting.
Buy local, from small organic farms, at the real price of food. Lower your meat intake a bit. That’s all there is to do to tackle the farming pollution issue, meat or vegetables.