SLG comprises Bridge of Weir Leather, Andrew Muirhead & Son, NCT Leather and W J & W Lang, specialist suppliers to the interior and transportation seating industries worldwide and are the largest manufacturer of bovine leather in the UK, employing some 500 people, with a turnover of £65 million ($97 million).
In 2008, SLG Technology Limited was formed, to provide separate non -leather making activities including IT, health & safety, accounting, insurance, treasury and environmental services.
The Princess was shown around the fully-commissioned TEP which will use the 30,000 tonnes of waste generated by the group’s subsidiaries to generate approximately 45m kW per year. The power will be used to run the group’s plant, tannery and factory in Bridge of Weir.
Eight new jobs have been created in SLG Technology Limited, which will operate the plant.
Jonathan Muirhead, chairman, Scottish Leather Group, commented: ‘Quite simply, this new plant, which has been 10 years in the planning, will allow us to make leather without costing the earth. The process will take waste from our subsidiaries, which previously went to landfill, and turn it into heat and steam which the factory needs for drying leather and heating water. It will also produce oil from the skin grease, which will be used as fuel and the final waste product, a mineral ash, will be sold on to the construction industry.
The continuous investment in technical innovation throughout the group has moved their manufacturing process from a craft based operation to a technology driven enterprise with their own manufacturing IP.
Muirhead added: ‘The UK government guidelines on waste and landfill are quite clear and there is no point in companies ignoring legislation until it is forced, these issues are not going to go away and we took the decision some time ago to tackle this head on.’
This is the latest ground breaking development for the Scottish Leather Group, which launched a joint venture in September last year, manufacturing leather in China for their growing automotive industry business.