What is UPPEAL™?
UPPEAL™ is a partly biobased vegan, versatile and waterproof alternative to animal leather, innovated by Mable Industries and Frumat since 2014.
By using the waste of apples grown for the juice and jam industries, UPPEAL™ taps into industrial symbiosis – repurposing local food waste as a resource. An estimated 30,000 tonnes of apple waste are created in Northern Italy alone, according to Mabel Industries. The waste – including leftover pulp, skins and seeds that are otherwise sent to landfill or burned – is recovered by Bolzano-based Frumat and dehydrated and ground into Frumat Apple Powder. The powder is then used by Mabel Industries to substitute oil and other fossil fuel derivatives, combined with polyurethane for durability and coated onto a canvas to create UPPEAL™.
It is soft and supple and can be easily embossed or laser-printed. For Stella McCartney, it is embossed with a crocodile-skin effect to craft vegan luxury icons that do not compromise on desirability or durability.
Exotic skins are cruel, unethical and inhumane, with animals kept in crowded and unhygienic enclosures and suffering immensely before being skinned, often whilst still alive. Vietnam alone exports around 30,000 crocodile skins annually, according to PETA.