In response to this post about Hermes breeding crocodiles to meet the leather bag demand:
To answer a few questions of this poster: it takes four crocodiles to make a bag because there are specific cuts of the crocodile skin used in making bags. You don’t use the entire skin to produce a bag, you use the material that meets the bag’s design.
Second, the bags cost a lot, if demand is high it means they aren’t charging enough. They are a luxury brand, if too many are selling at $50k then they’re too cheap for their market, they should be selling them at $100k instead. They likely will when they can’t keep up with demand. And why not? It’s a luxury market so it’s not about the price.
Chances are they are breeding them because they don’t want to deal with any irresponsible farmers who are producing hides of less quality than they need for their handbags or because their production lines are thinning natural populations which can endanger an ecosystem. That and the industry has grown enough to cut them out and bring another industry in-house (any good crocodile leather importer would do the same as business grows). It takes years for a crocodile or an alligator to grow to a size adequate for leathermaking.
In fact, there are regions where farming is ideal due to the populations of the species. Here’s another perspective from the Alligator leather industry. Through intelligent farming and conservation, the American Alligator has not only survived 30 years ago but thriving today: