On July 3, 2006, the Camel Tannery started operation under their new name Al Khaznah Tannery. Situated in the United Arab Emirates, the tannery is a one hour drive from the city of Abu Dhabi. Capable of producing leather from a variety of sources (camel, cow, sheep and goats), the Al Khaznah plant is located in the desert between Al Ain and Abu Dhabi, around 200km away from Dubai. On-site residential facilities have been provided for managers and staff who require it as well as accommodation for visiting technicians and engineers from chemical and equipment suppliers.

The tannery began by producing wet-blue but they have embarked on a continuous step-by-step upgrade of their production lines for shoe uppers and eventually automotive leather. Initial production targets are 500 hides and 1,500 skins daily. The finishing department is due to come into operation at the end of this year and will include Dornbusch embossing rollers and embossing plates with a fascinating new Camel design.

Dr Dornbusch, ceo and owner of Dornbusch Gravuren Gmbh had the chance to visit the tannery. His company, located in Germany, are world renowned suppliers of embossing rollers, printing rollers and embossing plates for various industries including tanneries.

The technical manager at Al Khaznah is Dr Abbas E Elansari with Raj Rangarajan as head of quality and development. Much of the machinery is from Italy (such as Emmezetta, GeMaTa, Carlessi) with technical support and consultancy by Italian technicians and BLC Leather Technology Centre.

In the design and construction phases of the project, BLC advised on the size, layout and equipment requirements of the tannery. The machinery, with a high level of automation, was selected to promote steady yet rapid flow through the manufacturing processes. To provide optimum conditions for both the product and the people, the owner specified a fully air-conditioned facility.

The supply of raw material has been assured by the choice of site where an existing abattoir will be the main hide supplier. A collection network, using refrigerated transport, will bring in additional raw materials from other slaughterhouses.