New Combat Boots Create Leather Shortage
WASHINGTON, D.C.—Sources in the War Production Board (WPB) last night indicated a leather shortage is on the horizon so severe that plans to use pigskin leather for civilian shoes are fully underway. A new design of combat boot is partially to blame for the shortage. The new boot requires more leather than the previous design. It is currently in limited use and as its production increases, the demand on leather stocks will further escalate the shortage. A reported one million combat boots will be produced in the first quarter of this year. Another cause of the leather shortage is a reduction in the number of hides being imported into the United States. The WPB order reducing by one-third the output of tanneries directed toward civilian use is on hold pending re-examination of leather stocks and re-assessment of military needs.