Leather is a durable and flexible material created by animal skin to make various goods like shoes, hats, jackets, skirts, trousers, belts, bookbinding, wallpaper, and as a furniture covering. It is produced in a wide variety of types and styles, decorated by a wide range of techniques. Leather is highly hygroscopic and tends to absorb moisture from the surrounding air.
Leather mold and mildew growth is common if safeguards are not in place during leather storage, packaging and shipping
When leather is exposed to the surrounding air, the porous surface of leather makes it highly susceptible to mildew buildup in humid climates. Mould, mildew and fungi germinate when relative humidity is above 40%
Finished leather products regain moisture while in storage, prior to packaging. This results in the high rate of product spoilage due to mould/ fungus/ mildew growth fueled by moisture absorbed by the leather.
Once mold and bacteria have established on the product then cleaning will only remove the visual effect. Structural defects however aren’t easily rectified.
It is necessary to store, package and ship the leather in humidity controlled environment where conditions are maintained at less than 40% RH at ambient temperature.