Start-up from Brooklyn Modern Meadow attracted $ 40 million of investments to become the main supplier of leather for the global fashion market, and other industries where this material is used today.
The company has developed biotechnology based on the use of collagen, which allows the production of artificial leather identical in quality to its quality.
Until now, one of the main arguments of opponents of faux leather was that this material is a petrochemical product. In addition, most existing artificial leathers are inferior in quality to genuine leather. However, with the development of Modern Meadow, all of these arguments become irrelevant.
According to the company, in the process of manufacturing new artificial leather, 80% is used less toxic chemicals for tanning. When Modern Meadow just started to work, in 2011, developers had to use animal cells to grow collagen, but the process was subsequently improved, and today it is not necessary. You can create new material without using animal cells, so new leather is an absolutely vegan product.
One of the advantages of such a break with the animal kingdom was that, unlike genuine leather, new material can be created as they say, on order - with one or another set of specific characteristics. “Imagine a material whose strength is the same as that of a kangaroo, but it’s soft like snake’s leather, or aesthetically pleasing material that matches the leather of a crocodile, but delicate like lamb’s leather ...”, developers write on their website.
Despite the fact that the Modern Meadow pilot project produced enough material in a month to make only a dozen jackets, and the production costs of artificial leather, according to Andras Forgas, CEO of the company, can be compared in cost with the production of premium genuine leather, after as the output of the new leather substitute will grow by 10 or 100 times, it will be a competitive product. According to the forecast of the analytical agency Research and Markets, in 2018 the global market for leather goods, including luggage, clothing and accessories, can reach $91,2 million. According to Modern Meadow representatives, they are going to take a significant share in this market.