Our vertically integrated supply chain gives us transparency in the production process to ensure a finished product that is ethically made while ensuring a quality product at an affordable price. Currently our supply chain involves production in both Uganda and India because we don't have the resources to invest in the equipment and training in our factory in Uganda. Therefore we do what we can efficiently in Uganda while leveraging the established industry in India where we can also create jobs for those in need.
The vision long term vision is to bring the value chain fully to Uganda and help establish an industry that has the potential to employ thousands. Our business model of investing 100% of the profit back into businesses in Uganda is a reflection of this commitment.
80% of the cattle herd in Uganda is in the hands of small scale farmers and herders which means that a healthy leather sector adds vital income to rural villages and towns. We have regional offices in both Eastern and Western Uganda to ensure a constant supply of quality hides. Once collected we salt and store the hides as the prep for the initial stages of leather production in our tannery.
Producing finished leather is an expensive process that requires large equipment. There are multiple stages in the production of leather and we are building out our capacity of each stage in an incremental fashion. Currently we are manufacturing semi processed leather (wet blue) and exporting to our contacts in India where the leather is finished. In the recent months our contact in India has sent 2 workers to Uganda with the intention of helping us do increased value addition with the hides. Eventually up to finished quality leather.
Our local partner in Uganda retains a limited quantity of hides that are finished exclusively for the production of security shoes that are sold all over East Africa.
In Uganda with our local partner we have roughly 40 workers who are employed making security shoes for local markets. While these shoes have done well in the market locally there is a big difference in quality of what is sold locally in Africa and what is sold in the United States. The workers are capable of executing on the quality but presently we cannot afford to invest in the required training.
This is why we work with artisans in India where we leverage an abundance of highly skilled workers who have been producing high quality leather goods for a long time.
Understanding the supply chain is central to knowing how your purchases affect people around the world. With more transparency you can make better informed decisions. Decisions that you can be proud of with products that represent the world we want to live in.