If you are wearing a pair of shoes Made in Italy, good chances are they belong to the leather district of Santa Croce sull’Arno, in the heart of the more laborious Tuscany. It’s here that the skin of cattle, sheep and pigs is treated to obtain the most suitable leather for covering shoes. It is in this tanning district, in the Terre di Pisa, that the big fashion brands draw on for their fine creations.
Itinerary: Santa Croce sull’Arno, Castelfranco di Sotto, Santa Maria a Monte, Montopoli in Valdarno, San Miniato Basso.
The District includes the municipalities of the low Valdarno: Santa Croce sull’Arno, San Miniato, Santa Maria a Monte, Castelfranco di Sotto, Montopoli in Valdarno and Fucecchio (the latter belongs to the Province of Florence). Santa Croce is at all effects the capital and headquarter of what has become one of the most famous tanning districts in the world. Technicians and managers from all over the world come here to find out how today, with respect for the environment and the workplace, companies and entrepreneurs are able to produce without polluting, using research and experimentation.
Each municipality has specialized in a production phase: from the vegetable tannery of San Miniato, to the chrome tins of Santa Croce, to the shoe factories of Castelfranco di Sotto and Santa Maria a Monte. The presence of the tanneries has encouraged the birth of manufacturing artisans for whom shoe factories, bagmakers and leather packages, expression of a quality craftsmanship aimed at those interested in shopping, directly at the place of production, avoiding shopping malls and outlets.
This itinerary is proposed as “Leather Road”, along the lines of the most famous Wine or Oil Roads, to enhance leather and leather as tourist attractions, informing visitors about the stages of processing in respect of the environment, explaining what lies behind the purchase of quality craft products
Info on company outlets: 0571.31101
Pro Loco Santa Croce