The XXXVI biennial Congress of the International Union of Leather Technologists and Chemists Society (IULTCS), hosted by Africa Leather and Leather Products Institute (ALLPI), in conjunction with the Ministry of Industry of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, kicks off today (November 3, 2021) at Skylight Hotel, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. The Congress is officially opened by his Excellency Mr. Tarekegn Bululta, State Minister, Ministry of Industry of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia and welcome messages were also given by Mr. Ghebregziabher Ghebremedhin, Acting Executive Director of ALLPI and Dr. Luis Zugno, IULTCS President.

The Congress, under the theme of “Greening the Leather Value Chain”, is organized in a HYBRID mode and has brought together more than 240 representatives from scholars, researchers, experts, leather and leather products manufacturers and investors from 6 continents, namely Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, North America and South America.

A total of 114 scientific papers lined up for oral (38 in number) and poster (76 in numbers) presentation for the three days duration of the Congress. The papers thematic areas include Scientific Researches of leather, intelligent manufacturing of leather products, Cleaner technologies for the leather processing, Leather chemicals, Composite materials and utilization of leather waste resources, Environmental Management Technologies in leather industry, Leather industry entrepreneurship and progress towards sustainability, Fashion, life style leather products and design innovation.

The prestigious keynote lecture of the Congress, the Heidemann Lecture, is delivered by Professor Anthony Covington, who has authored over 300 technical publications, and received the IULTCS Merit Award for Excellence in the Leather Industry in 2009, and the Alsop Award for Outstanding Scientific Contribution to the Leather Industry from the American Leather Chemists Association in 2011.

IULTCS 2021 Merit Award for Excellence in the Leather Industry is given to Dr. Thirumalachari Ramasami who is known for his significant contributions to the chemistry of chromium as a scientist and leadership to the Indian leather sector as a technologist and to science as a civil servant. He authored more than 237 research publications, eight chapters in books, and numerous general articles. He holds more than 40 patents.

The Congress is expected to leave delegates with great insights and informative actions in the areas of technology, chemistry and science of leather to address the sector's challenges.

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