World's first biodegradable leather shoe is unveiled

Dutch company OAT Shoes claims to have developed the world's first certified biodegradable leather shoe, following in the footsteps of Puma and New Balance who both recently unveiled trainers made from recycled plastic.

The Limited Skin shoe was launched at Amsterdam International Fashion Week

The Limited Skin shoe was launched at Amsterdam International Fashion Week

OAT's new Limited Skin collection is made with leather tanned with non-toxic agents that are 100% biodegradable when buried underground. Other parts of the shoes are lined with organic fleece.

The company states on its website that the future of fashion "lies in a reconciliation between nature and industry". Initially it is only making 360 pairs of the biodegradable shoes for sale within the EU.

OAT also makes a Virgin collection canvas shoe that contains a sheet of seeds tucked in a pocket in its tongue. This sprouts wildflowers if the shoe is buried at the end of its useful life.

Like the Limited Skin shoes, the rest of the Virgin sneaker is biodegradable. The company says the hemp and cotton will degrade within a few months when placed in regular potting soil. In addition, the plastic has been tested to break down within six months in an ideal soil environment.

Maxine Perella


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Waste & resource management
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