Adidas has pledged to make 11 million shoes made from upcycled plastic waste, in a bid to help clear up the world’s oceans.
Shoes are wonderful things, and they’re about to get even better.
The plans were announced earlier this year, when the global sports brand explained it would be working with environmental organisation Parley for the Oceans to intercept plastic waste on beaches in places like the Maldives before it reaches the sea.
The upcycled plastic waste is then made into a yarn, which is used to create the upper material of the shoes.
It’s not a new concept for Adidas, which produced more than five million pairs of shoes from upcycled plastic last year.
However, for 2019 the company hopes to more than double its previous efforts – working towards its wider goal to use 100 per cent recycled polyester in all apparel and footwear by 2024.
Adidas has also signed the Climate Protection Charter for the Fashion Industry, which means it has agreed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 30 per cent by 2030.
Eric Liedtke, Adidas Executive Board member responsible for Global Brands, said: “With Adidas products made from recycled plastic, we offer our consumers real added value beyond the look, functionality and quality of the product, because every shoe is a small contribution to the preservation of our oceans. After one million pairs of shoes produced in 2017, five million in 2018, we plan to produce eleven million pairs of shoes containing recycled ocean plastic in 2019.”
Gil Steyaert, Executive Board member responsible for Global Operations at Adidas, said: “Sustainability at Adidas goes far beyond recycled plastic. We also continue to improve our environmental performance during the manufacturing of our products. This includes the use of sustainable materials, the reduction of CO2 emissions and waste prevention. In 2018 alone, we saved more than 40 tons of plastic waste in our offices, retail stores, warehouses and distribution centres worldwide and replaced it with more sustainable solutions.”
The latest product in the range is a limited edition version of Adidas’ TOUR360 XT golf shoe, which was unveiled this year.
The first ever golf shoe made from upcycled plastic waste intercepted from beaches and coastal communities, the shoe features a sock-like design with a cushioned sole.
“Our company is extremely focused on sustainability and we wanted to incorporate that mission into our sport,” said Masun Denison, global footwear director at Adidas Golf.
“This is the first golf shoe we’ve ever made that incorporates upcycled materials and this is just the beginning. In a sport that’s played outdoors and where sustainability is often under the microscope, we feel this is a massive step forward for the game.”