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Adidas Is Creating a Recyclable Running Shoe Made Out of Repurposed Ocean Plastics

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  • by Peter Manley

As vegans well know, ocean pollution is a major environmental concern worldwide. In fact, it’s now believed that there are approximately 5.25 trillion pieces of plastic debris in the ocean, according to Ocean Crusaders. Of that mass, about 269,000 tons float on the surface, and nearly four billion plastic microfibers per square kilometer litter the deep sea. Removing plastic waste from the ocean is indeed a necessary first step; however, Adidas is taking it a step further. 

As Eric Liedtke, Executive Board Member at Adidas, said, “Taking plastic waste out of the system is the first step, but we can’t stop there.”

Adidas is creating a new concept that vegans will welcome: a shoe made with 100% reclaimed and recyclable ocean-plastic materials that itself can be recycled over and over again. The new sneaker, called the FUTURECRAFT.LOOP, is currently in beta testing and is scheduled to be publicly released by 2021. 

The sneaker will be a multi-purpose shoe meant for running, training, or casual wear. When a pair wears out, the owner can return them to Adidas, who will break them down and recycle them into new shoes. 

"What happens to your shoes after you've worn them out? You throw them away...except there is no ‘away,’” says Liedtke. “There are only landfills and incinerators and ultimately an atmosphere choked with excess carbon or oceans filled with plastic waste. The next step is to end the concept of 'waste' entirely. Our dream is that you can keep wearing the same shoes over and over again,” 

Adidas is aiming to produce 11 million pairs of shoes by 2021 that will all be made with recycled ocean plastics collected from beaches and seaside communities. Expect vegans to be first in line to buy them.

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