Chromate Testing in Leather: EN ISO 17075

  • Ines Anderie
  • Kerstin Schulte


Most of the leathers produced nowadays are chrome tanned. Leather needs to be preserved for future use, which is achieved by the tanning process. Usually chromium(III) salts are used as tanning agents; therefore, chrome-tanned leathers always contain some chromium(III). Under certain conditions, one of the most potent contact allergens, chromium(VI), can be generated in chrome-tanned leathers out of chromium(III). Some states (e.g., EU) have enacted regulations on chromium(VI). Leather articles containing chromium(VI) are not marketable there. Nearly each week, recalls of chromium(VI) containing articles are published in RAPEX, a European Internet platform for warnings of dangerous products. The following chapter deals with the different test methods that are available for the determination of chromium and explains their indications. Legal regulations specify that chromium(VI) should not be detectable using the detection method EN ISO 17075. Several test parameters are available to characterize the chromium content of leather and the chromium exposure this represents: to check if a leather is chrome tanned or chrome-free tanned, the test on total chromium is performed; analysis on soluble chromium simulates the exposure to chromium(III) during wear situations; and heat aging and UV light aging simulate stress conditions for the leather.


Leather EN ISO 17075 Chromium(VI) Chromium(VI) aging 


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© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Prüf- und Forschungsinstitut Pirmasens e.V.PirmasensGermany

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