Adidas adds 3D-printed insole to ocean waste shoe

Sportswear giant Adidas has created the world's first sports shoe made entirely from reclaimed and recycled ocean waste, which now includes a 3D-printed midsole made from recycled polyester and fill net content.

Adidas unveiled its latest prototype at the Parley Talks at COP21 in Paris, where the company serve as sponsors for ‘Parley for the Oceans’ – an educational company intent on ending plastic pollution of the oceans.

Adidas group executive board member for global brands Eric Liedtke said: “World leaders forging an agreement is wonderful, but we shouldn’t need to be told to do the right thing. The industry can’t afford to wait for directions any longer.

“Together with the network of Parley for the Oceans, we have started taking action and creating new sustainable materials and innovations for athletes. The 3D-printed Ocean Plastic shoe midsole stands for how we can set new industry standards if we start questioning the reason to be of what we create.”

The plastic and net filaments were retrieved by Parley’s partner organisation Sea Shepherd which retrieved the recyclable waste from a 110-day tracking expedition of an illegal poaching vessel off of the coast of West Africa.

Cyrill Gutsch, founder of Parley for the Oceans, said: “2015 is our year, the year of the Oceans: the ocean movement successfully brought the cause onto the COP21 agenda in Paris. Protecting life underwater became the 14th development goal of the United Nations.

“With a framework of political goodwill in place, it is the right moment to transform words into action. Therefore, Parley in Paris is all about updating knowledge, sharing visions, fine-tuning strategies, creating concepts and forging collaborations in order to kickstart change.”

Banished plastic

The new prototype will be consumer ready along with other ocean plastic products by the end of the year. The concept shoe was originally showcased in June but adidas have since add 3D printed soles to the prototype.

Adidas has also announced it will phase out the use of plastic bags in its own retail stores. This has already started in some stores and is expected to be fully-integrated by early 2016.

The company will also phase out the use of plastic microbeads across all its body care products by 31 December, 2015. In its 2014 sustainability progress report, Adidas highlighted reductions in water use and carbon emissions.

Matt Mace

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