Sperm whale oil has been used in the skin tanning industry for a very long time. Now Texaco Oil Co. has developed a substitute oil called Ultratex, which equals the performance and in some areas exceeds that of the original.
Ultratex is added during the tanning process, where it operates in extremely acid conditions. It replaces ainmal fats and oils lost in the intensive cleaning of the skin, much in the manner that sperm oil did. Ultratex is also cheaper than sperm whale oil and does not suffer the price fluctuations and uncertainty of supply of the latter.
The use of sperm whale oil was banned by the EEC in 1979. Let us hope that Ultratex will be widely used and result in the banning of sperm whale oil for all industrial uses.