Satra have now accredited almost 75 laboratories in companies around the world. The latest — Centro Tecnologico do Couro, Calcados et Afins (CTCCA) — in Brazil is their first in the country. It is independent and located in the heart of one of the country’s major footwear manufacturing regions.

CTCCA offer a range of tests on leathers and textiles, soling materials and shoe components, as well as on complete items of footwear.

Manufacturers need to ensure their materials, components and finished products conform to certain performance criteria and need to test them before, during and after production.

Satra help them by offering a laboratory management package. Services range from training right through to help with product specifications which include testing footwear for comfort, water resistance, oil resistance or anti-slip qualities.

Once a lab can demonstrate to Satra’s travelling experts it can operate a robust system of testing, yielding reliable results, it is offered accreditation and can freely advertise the fact

Satra laboratory accreditation has other benefits. These include better decision-making when selecting materials, better control of incoming goods and real cost savings on rejects and re-works.

Satra also helps resourcers and retailers to run their own laboratory schemes, sometimes covering tens of labs through world-wide supply chains.

The test centre’s growing influence in South-East Asia is now reflected in the rising number of laboratories being accredited there by Satra.

These include some of the largest footwear organisations in China — such as General Footwear, Glory Shoes (Huang Pu), Grosby (Pacific Dunlop), Sherwood, Shing Tak Group, Stella International (Simona), Tan Tec Industrial, Wolverine Worldwide, Xin-Er I Chuan Enterprises, Yue Yuan Industrial (YY1), Zhong Shan Glory Shoes Industrial Co Ltd.

The Hong Kong Standards and Testing Centre is Satra accredited, as are other labs in the UK, USA, Italy, Portugal, Germany and Belgium.

‘We know from the feedback we receive that members find lasting benefits from our laboratory management package’, says Satra deputy chief executive Richard Turner.

‘Most see a direct effect on the bottom line through better control of rejects, re-works and returns within months.’