SAFEGUARDS | SoftlinesNO. 057/22
Becoming effective on January 1, 2022, the Leather Decree, Decree Law No. 3/2022, establishes the definition and use of the term ‘leather,’ and its derivatives or synonyms, in the name and composition of products manufactured and placed on the domestic market.
With this law, it will no longer be possible to associate the word ‘leather’ (‘couro’) with prefixes, suffixes or qualifying adjectives in marketing messages or labeling if the material is not leather. Therefore, the use of certain expressions, such as ‘vegan leather’ or ‘synthetic leather,’ are not only technically incorrect but also no longer allowed. Their use will now be considered deceptive and misleading to consumers, and subject to fines and criminal proceedings.
In the law, a harmonized definition of the term ‘leather’ is created by specifying all characteristics as well as the technical standards to be followed. The use of the terms ‘couro (leather)’, ‘pele (skin)’, ‘pele curtida (tanned skin)’ or ‘couro revestido (coated leather)’, as well as other terms defined in the law, their derivatives or synonyms, are prohibited for use on any materials that do not meet the defined characteristics of products.
Portugal follows Belgium, France, Spain and Italy in enacting laws to ban these terms, aiming to protect consumers from misleading information and ensure that the leather industry is not harmed by deceptive business practices.
SGS Global Softlines has an extensive network of over 40 laboratories worldwide, with a strong team of committed professionals from multi-disciplinary backgrounds. Our internationally accredited state-of-the-art testing laboratories offer a comprehensive range of physical, chemical and functional testing services for components, materials and finished products. We help your company ensure quality, performance and compliance with international, industrial and regulatory standards worldwide. In the end, it’s only trusted because it’s tested. Discover more at www.sgs.com/softlines.
For inquiries, please contact:
Consumer and Retail — Softlines
US & Canada Softlines Business Head
t: +1 973 461 7919
Stay on top of regulatory changes within your industry: subscribe to SafeGuardS!
Read more articles for the Consumer Goods and Retail industry
© SGS Société Générale de surveillance SA - 2022 - All rights reserved - SGS is a registered trademark of SGS Société Générale de surveillance SA. This is a publication of SGS, except for 3rd parties’ contents submitted or licensed for use by SGS. SGS neither endorses nor disapproves said 3rd parties contents. This publication is intended to provide technical information and shall not be considered an exhaustive treatment of any subject treated. It is strictly educational and does not replace any legal requirements or applicable regulations. It is not intended to constitute consulting or professional advice. The information contained herein is provided “as is” and SGS does not warrant that it will be error-free or will meet any particular criteria of performance or quality. Do not quote or refer any information herein without SGS’s prior written consent.