Microcapsules for odor management in leather

Pulcra Chemicals has expanded its range of odorneutralizing products by incorporating microencapsulated components. The key benefit of utilizing microcapsule technology lies in their exceptional durability. The active components are gradually and continuously released, enabling at the same time a significant reduction in the chemical load on the leather. Moreover, this ensures that the effects persist for an extended period, ideally lasting several years. The critical aspect lies in determining the size and material of the capsules, which results in a specific release mechanism that must be tailored to the intended use of the article. Microencapsulation for leather products was introduced to Pulcra through the integration of Devan Chemicals into the Pulcra group in July 2021.

Devan Chemicals is a worldwide developer of speciality chemicals for textiles with a strong focus on innovation, research & development and sustainability. Devan is a leading innovator in the fields of protection (flame retardants), performance (odour control & stain release), thermoregulation (PCM’s and cooling technologies such as Moov&Cool®), health & wellness (aromatherapy, R-Vital™ and allergen control) and fibres and yarns (functional masterbatch technologies). 

Unpleasant odors in leather can stem from various sources. Protein degradation produces foul smells associated with medium chain amines. Decomposing fats or sugars emit pungent odors attributed to aldehydes and ketones. The characteristic scent of rotten eggs arises from organic sulfide compounds, often generated during the liming process. Additionally, toasted notes can develop during drying, whether of the leather itself or powder products like tanning agents or dyes.

Leather odors are persistent and result from complex interactions among different components. Our research focuses on three key principles for odor control:

  1. Removing or chemically binding potential odor-causing precursors during leather processing.
  2. Preventing the formation of malodorous molecules through catalytic interactions.
  3. Balancing odors using specific neutralizing molecules.

Combining these principles with Pulcra Chemicals‘ processing expertise, spanning from beamhouse to finishing, can help solve odor-related issues in leather. Our odor control products are fully approved for car leathers and perform well in all emission measurements.