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Peter Horobin Saddlery stick to the traditional leathers of Europe. Choosing only the highest quality leather from Germany, Austria, England and France. Leather choice at PHS is a vital aspect of the custom made process, if it is not top quality it isn't used! We also endeavour to use sustainable tanneries.
LEATHER IS ONE OF THE WORLDS MOST RENEWABLE RESOURCES. IT HAS BEEN USED SINCE THE DAWN OF CHRIST. IT IS STRONG, DURABLE AND WHEN LOOKED AFTER, CAN LAST A LIFETIME. THERE IS ALSO A SHORTAGE OF LEATHER WORLD WIDE.
Why? Lots of reasons, more than we can discuss here, however it ranges from shortage of cattle due to drought, to the growing population of the world, to the demand for luxury items world wide and the larger corporations securing their future by buying up all of the leather! Then there is price point!
All of these factors lead to many different outcomes, one of them is that companies with a lower price point may become less responsible for the materials they use. These lesser quality materials such as synthetics or artificial leathers are disposable, they do not last long and are harmful for the environment.
The trend of really soft leather at the moment amongst many brands is not a long term choice. Some brands come into the workshop which are only 6 months old and are already worn on the saddle flap. To us when you are paying up to $6000 for a saddle, (our highest price for a saddle is the Amazone or Liberty $5495.00) this standard of quality is just not good enough.
This is also why second hand Peter Horobin saddles are so highly valued, because they last such a long time.
Leather is a large part of our business and we want to use only the best quality out there. Not only to ensure that our saddles last a lifetime but to be more responsible towards a greener future. If we are able to do our small part and set long term sustainability goals, then we have an even richer purpose to make saddles for horses and riders in this industry.
Hopefully alongside all of the other benefits of a PH you will choose to purchase a saddle from us not only because of the status of the PHS brand but also because we want to ensure we have a better future for our planet and for our equestrian & racing industry.
We are on the constant search for leathers from around the world where the tanneries provide more sustainable and greener practices.
Leathers from Europe have always been seen in the public eye as a higher standard of quality. Yes, the quality of the hides are superior from Europe, however they are often shipped to countries like Vietnam, Indonesia & India for the tanning process then shipped back to Europe again. The 'middle man' is unknown and the tannery to the consumer is 'not even thought about'.
Recently the Dutch Government signed an agreement to help Mongolian Tanneries become more sustainable. Indonesia has a huge number of tanneries who are focused on a better future. This is not surprising as half of the 250 million of their population are under the age of 28.
There are so many variables about using leather and to say we use 'sustainable' leather would be a very broad and misleading term, because which part of it is truly sustainable? If you were extremely pro active you could go right back to the husbandry conditions of the cows which for us as a small company is not financially viable, however what we have been doing and will continue to do is source the best quality leather from the best tanneries in the world, who use greener practices and are still of excellent quality.