Founded as a small family-owned tannery, today Dani SpA is a company with approximately thousand employees and collaborators. Localised in Arzignano (Vicenza), the main tanning pole in the world, Dani produces quality leathers for all goods, from footwear to furniture products, from leather goods to the automotive sector. For years this tannery has taken the road of sustainability, putting social and environmental responsibility at the centre of the business activities of the group chaired by Giancarlo Dani. A commitment witnessed by the numerous research projects launched over the years and aimed at the constant search for new methods to reduce the use of natural resources and emissions, also improving the waste recovery capacity. In confirmation of this commitment to the environment and society, with a view to corporate transparency, since 2015 it has been publishing every year a real Sustainability Report which is also available on the web.

We talk about it with Guido Zilli, Dani’s Sustainability Communication & market Research Responsible.

Dani is one of the Italian tanneries that has invested more on sustainability. What feedback did you get on the market?
“Among the main results achieved, I certainly underline the fact that today we are perceived as a company with reduced operational risks, an increasingly important element in global supply chains. We have achieved an improvement in Dani’s reputation and perception as a company with the sensitivity and appropriate technical and managerial skills to face the challenges posed by complex and changing socio-economic and political-institutional contexts. At the same time we have found a growing attention towards our product lines, in particular those characterised by a strong environmental connotation; what we hope is greater coordination between requests of the purchasing and sustainability areas of our customers, which are sometimes inconsistent with each other in terms of requests by tanneries”.

What are your new goals?

“From an organisational point of view, we work on the implementation of an energy management system and a further strengthening of the worker safety management system.
From a research point of view, we are committed to identifying new ways to enhance by-products of the tanning cycle and the development of new leather processing technologies with reduced consumption of natural resources. From a commercial point of view, we are carrying out a process of further strengthening the bond with our customers, also through the joint design and implementation of products and communication tools useful for enhancing their products (for example “EPD Process”)”.

What are the weaknesses you still need to work on?

“We must be able to improve our communication skills to explain the uniqueness of the skin. A natural and sustainable material, which is fully part of the circular economy, a material that is so versatile and elegant that it becomes a design icon, constantly keeping a youthful and daily feature.
And then we need to bring new generations closer to the tanning industry, a sector that has invested and is investing a lot in socio-environmental sustainability. A path which is in line with the values and attentions of millennials and future generations”.