Recyclable Sneakers? Big Brands Aim to Make This Eco-Friendly Idea a Reality

Sneakers are often made from materials with very slow decomposition rates, meaning the pair you throw out today will still be sitting in a landfill decades from now. Big brands in the footwear industry are trying to change this with new and innovative approaches to making your favorite sneakers.

Big Brands, Smart Designs

A look at the news reveals several well-known names stepping out with new concepts for recyclable sneakers:

  • Nike has been running its “Reuse-A-Shoe” campaign since the early 1990s, encouraging fans of the brand to return their old sneakers to the company so that the materials can be repurposed.
  • In fall of 2016, Adidas released shoes made from recycled ocean waste. The company plans to make 1 million more pairs in 2017.
  • Reebok announced their “Cotton and Corn” initiative in spring of 2017 with the goal of creating shoes designed to be turned into compost and used when growing new materials.

These innovative ideas have the power to transform an industry where waste was once a serious problem into a driving force in the ongoing effort to preserve the environment.

Better Materials for Your Feet – and the Planet

By using organic materials, such as corn-derived propanediol, big sneaker brands can produce shoes designed to be reused in many ways once they’re no longer wearable. Some companies reuse materials from old pairs or recycle their own production trash to reduce the demand for nonrenewable resources. Like all businesses, sneaker manufacturers want to continue to grow, but more and more are recognizing the need to minimize waste and lessen the environmental impact of their products.

Giving “Junk” a New Life

When you choose recyclable sneakers instead of pairs manufactured from scratch, you support the use of fewer chemicals and the preservation of natural resources. Companies seeking to create more of these types of products are effectively taking waste out of the environment. Through a GotSneakers fundraiser or a similar collection program, you can take the concept one step further by sending lightly used sneakers to people in areas of the world where affordable footwear is hard to find.

The next time you need new sneakers, why not look into one of these eco-friendly options? You can make sure your old shoes don’t wind up in a landfill by taking part in a GotSneakers fundraiser or finding a local recycling service. You’ll make a bigger impact on the world while reducing the “footprint” your shoes leave on the environment.


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