Reading Time: < 1 minute The product can be made in a number of colours (Photo: Facebook)
Reading Time: < 1 minute

A new vegan leather has been crafted using coconut water – while its creators
promise an animal friendly, sustainable, and eco-conscious alternative to
animal skin.


The leather alternative is the result of collaboration between product designer Susmith C.
Suseelan, and designer and material researcher Zuzana Gombosova.

The two have partnered to form a startup called Malai, after the cellulose from which
their product is derived.

Waste reduction

Gombosova and Suseelan are sourcing the coconut water needed to make the cellulose from coconut processing plants in Kerala.

This is just one effort on the part of Malai to reduce food industry waste.

Suseelan said: “We procure natural fibres from banana farmers, who otherwise discard the
stems after the fruit is harvested.”

Leather alternative

The result is a product that is not only flexible, and durable, but does not require
animals to die in its production.

Suseelan said: “Nobody thinks of the harm done to the environment and the number of
animals that are slaughtered in the process.

“It’s high time that an eco-friendly substitute for leather is introduced in the market.”

Emily Court

Emily Court is a writer and content creator published in Plant Based News, Raise Vegan, Living Vegan and The Financial Diet. A self-described "recovering vegan hothead," she is now a pragmatic member of Vancouver's vibrant and growing plant-powered community. Hailing from Halifax, Nova Scotia, she holds a BA in Spanish and certificate in Intercultural Communication from Dalhousie University, where her thesis focused on topics of cultural and gender-based discrimination. She aims to apply a privilege-conscious and culturally sensitive approach to her work in all fields.