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The raw skin, when dried, loses its moisture and is no more the breeding grounds of bacteria and fungi. Therefore, here solar energy is used as a preservative too.

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Common salt has been used to preserve skin for ages, since time immemorial.

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The putrefaction of the skins and hides can be stopped or slowed down by the use of right types of preservatives. Preservatives either kill the microbes or force them to change to inactive spores, which they will remain until the conditions favours again.

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Once the animal is not alive, the skin or hide starts to putrefy, thanks to the bacteria, fungus, algae and other microbial organisms feasting on the protein rich diet served to them.

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The raw skin and hides have to be cleaned by removing the hair and flesh from them to prevent the purification process. Liming process helps in achieving this.

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In order to get rid of the hair on the raw skins and hides, as well as to remove the flesh that is underneath the skins, leather industry uses strong lime solutions to dissolve them and rub with sharp knives (for flesh called as adipose layer) and blunt ones (for hair) to clean up.

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Apart from being the beautiful outer covering for the flesh and bones, skin is also useful in many ways, such as thermoregulation – controlling body temperature with sweat and fat, gives protection from heat, rains and cold and helps maintain the salt balance in the body too.

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The middle layer of the skin is called as the Dermis that starts where the epidermis ends. This constitutes to about 60 to 90% of the skin’s thickness and is the most important in deciding what the final leather would look like. This contains hair roots, sweat and fat glands, along with nerve endings and blood vessels to rejuvenate the skin.

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The topmost layer of the skin is called as epidermis, which gives the beauty to the ladies and make men ogle upon. This is also important as the pattern of the final leather product is decided by the quality of the initial epidermis.

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Even the expert meat providers and butcheries will be extra cautious when it comes to flaying – removing the skin or hide from the dead animals, as even small cuts would reduce the price tremendously. Only the single piece raw materials are considered at higher prices.

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