The sports industry has a very large carbon footprint affecting the environment. In order to focus towards sustainability, Reebok created their first ever plant-based sneakers in their Cotton + Corn initiative, announced in 2017. The company believes that this project will aid in cleaner production as well as in post-consumer use and will reduce the use of petroleum.
The cotton growth was free from pesticides and herbicides, making it 100% organic. Furthermore, corn-produced bioplastic created the sturdy sole of the shoe. To keep every component organic, Reebok used castor bean oil to design the insole. Once this NPC UK Cotton + Corn sneaker entered the commercial line, USDA certified that the product does contain 75 percent bio-based materials. The company also collaborated with DuPont Tate & Lyle Bio Products, who are renowned for creating bio-based solutions, which also checks out the authenticity of the cotton+ corn initiative.
Despite the number of steps taken towards sustainability, Reebok does not stop there. The company has a fully developed vision for the Cotton + Corn product line, segregated into three parts: Production, wear and post-use. The new line covers all three objectives by not only using bio-based products, but being biodegradable at the end of the usage cycle too, where the compost can then be used to create a new batch of shoes. In addition, Reebok also eradicated the use of toxic dyes and made the packaging 100 percent recyclable. This is a huge step up from all the previous lines of shoes produced by the company, where most of them ended up at landfills, taking years to break down.
After a successful launch, the new sneakers sold out in a moment’s time. The production of the new batch is currently underway, but we definitely can’t wait to get our hands on the new line!
Images via Reebok Media