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Illegal trafficking of exotic skins in the world.

The market of exotic skins is highly valued in the Footwear Fashion Industry, the most famous brands worldwide present more consistently products made from shark skin, snake, elephant, ostrich,… being considered legal in many countries as long as they comply with mandatory guidelines. 


However as part of these requirements producers and sellers encounter a series of paperwork that includes high tax amounts, especially if these skins are to be exported. 


That is when the black market comes into play, which not only takes care of selling these skins without any license that guarantees their certification of origin, but also takes advantage of marketing hides from animals in danger of extinction, which of course is not approved by government bodies. 


In Mexico, for example, the law promises to punish with a penalty of between one and nine years, in addition to heavy fines for those who for profit affect a protected species or do not meet the legal requirements for its commercialization.


But it is something that seems to matter little to those who work in this trade illegally, because in the markets of supplies for footwear it is normal to find in the streets sellers posted in the streets with the furs scattered on blankets that go from the 3,000 Mexican pesos, from all exotic species even those in danger of extinction.


In our country, fortunately, the producers who manufacture with this type of leather are a minority, but for those who decide to do so they use them mostly for cowboy boots that can sell in up to 6,000 pesos, all depends on which animal are made and the color of the part, both factors directly affect the final price. 


It should be noted that the use of these skins is approved in many countries and at least on our part we do not disagree with the manufacture of footwear from exotic leather, as the result is usually very attractive, elegant and trendy. Although it is important to emphasize that it is a practice that must be done under the margins of legality imposed by the governments of each country, all this in order to minimize the environmental impact and the damage that this can produce to the animal community, which is just like us of vital importance on the planet. 


"Some countries approve the construction of footwear with exotic skins, but with the implementation of some laws for this purpose"

Jorge Martínez.



Commercial agencies/ Wholesalerss   |   shoe manufacturers   |   Leather goods manufacturers   |   Shoe shop/ Retailer

But of course we are not the only ones in the world where this contraband occurs, in fact we are not even at the top of this bad practice. In Spain, for example, 3,300 species or parts of them are involved each year with a depressing 31% in the illegal trafficking of skins, mainly from crocodiles and snakes that are approved as species for marketing, as we have already explained is something that must be done legally.

And even luxury brands like Gucci, Channel or Ralph Lauren, to name just a few, have forgotten the negative consequences of this exercise, since for example between 2003 and 2013 the United States seized more than 5,500 products made of exotic skins but obtained illegally, leaving the benefit of the doubt whether the brands were fully aware of their origin or were deceived.


Special care must be taken with this illegal practice, which many people are unaware of, because they do not know that the trafficking of skins and animal parts on the black market represents the second cause of the decline in biodiversity in the world after destroying their habitats.



So if you are going to sell these showy skins or you want to start your footwear production lines with this material just do it absolutely legally, at the end of the day the requirements and taxes for this will be valued in the price of the final product, and is that a pair of shoes made from exotic skin usually has a high cost, above those made of other materials, which easily doubles or triples costs. 

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