Adidas to make 11 million shoes out of recycled ocean plastic

Adidas to make 11 million shoes out of recycled ocean plastic

Earlier this year, Adidas made a pledge to make 11 million shoes made from upcycled plastic waste. This was all done in the pursuit of cleaning up the oceans - and now the company is looking to take further steps to re-use materials.

In January, Adidas announced they'd be working with Parley for the Oceans, an organisation that addresses ocean plastic pollution. Together, they are looking to intercept plastic waste on beaches from places such as the Maldives, before they reach the sea. This waste can then be upcycled into yarn, which can be used to create the upper material of their shoes.

Adidas have already produced over five million shoes from this process, but in 2019 they are hoping to more than double previous efforts. Their stated goal is to use 100 per cent recycled polyester in all apparel and footwear by 2024.

Eric Liedtke, 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."

One of the latest products in this range has been unveiled earlier this week. The limited edition shoe is a version of their TOUR360 XT golf shoe, which features a sock-like design and cushioned sole.

adidas recycled plastic waste golf shoe Credit: Adidas

"Our company is extremely focused on sustainability and we wanted to incorporate that mission into our sport," said global footwear director at Adidas Golf, Masun Denison. "This is the first golf shoe we've ever made that incorporates upcycled materials and this is just the beginning."

Gil Steyaert, Executive Board member responsible for Global Operations at Adidas, also touched on the sustainability mission the company is following:

"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."

In addition to the aforementioned upcycling of plastic waste, Adidas have signed the Climate Protection Charter for the Fashion Industry. The charter - launched at COP24 in Katowice, Poland in late 2018 - set the target of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 30 per cent by 2030.