With this important result all the objectives have been achieved. The third edition of the IULTCS EuroCongress, which took place in Vicenza from 18 to 20 September with the skilful direction of the Italian Association of Leather Chemists (AICC), brought together more than 520 delegates from 21 also non-EU countries like Turkey, India, Colombia, United States, Mexico and even New Zealand.
“Rinascimento: The Next Leather Generation” is the happy title chosen for an event that set itself the goal of outlining the future of the sector, contributing to its relaunch after the pandemic crisis. The sustainable innovation of the tanning process is at the centre of the debate, an opportunity for a real discussion on the leather value as an example of circular economy. Through 26 oral presentations and 27 posters at the Vicenza Congress Centre, the latest science and technology advances in the sector were presented, articulated between four macro themes: increasingly green and performing chemical products, technological innovation, new and more accurate methods of analysis for leather to detect the presence of unwanted components, circular economy for the reduction of waste and the enhancement of by-products. In particular, much has been said about how to reduce the bisphenol content in leathers, the development of bio-based chemical products, biodegradable leathers, and the enhancement of processing waste. A 23-member Scientific Commission chaired by Franca Nuti sifted through the works presented at the Congress.
Giancarlo Lovato president of the EuroCongress, at the head of an organisational machine made up of 60 volunteers who worked two years to set up a high-level event, was rightly pleased with the result: “We set ourselves the target of 400 participants: 520 arrived, including a hundred tanners and tanning technicians, a significantly higher number than expected. I understand that the level of the works presented was considered excellent and I hope that this Congress has helped to understand how research can play a crucial role in addressing the challenges that the future will bring us”.
Roberto Mariano Mecenero, outgoing president of AICC, expressed great appreciation for all the colleagues who helped to organise the event and for the companies that made it possible: “I want to say thank you very much to all our sponsors, whose response was better than expected but which clearly represents a demonstration of trust in us as well as a recognition of the work done so far”.
Great appreciation also came from Luis Zugno, secretary and past president of IULTCS: “It was the best tanning chemical congress that has ever been organised both in terms of content and participation and I perhaps am the one who has seen more congresses than anyone in this sector from 1983 onwards”. Zugno also expressed words of encouragement for Italy: “Italian tanning districts represent an incredible force which, combined with the creativity of entrepreneurs, give this country something extra to overcome future challenges”.
The third EuroCongress was also made unforgettable by Vicenza, a wonderful city rich in historical and artistic treasures, located a stone’s throw from Arzignano, the heart of the Venetian tanning district. The locations chosen for social events are magnificent, such as the Palladio Olympic Theater which hosted the opening ceremony and the Bevilacqua Castle, a priceless setting for the gala dinner.