Adidas Is Making Millions of Shoes Out of Recycled Ocean Plastic

Did you know that by 2050 there will be more plastic than fish in the ocean? Or that plastic can be found in ocean waters as deep as 20,000 feet?

These are sad stats, and ones that sports brand Adidas is well aware of. It’s actually part of the reason by the partnered with Parley for the Oceans to create sneakers containing recycled ocean plastic.

Parley for the Oceans, founded by Activist Designer Cyrill Gutsch, is an organization dedicated to raising awareness about ocean pollution and waste. The two decided to join ranks and create an impactful partnership that both companies could benefit from.

“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,” Adidas executive board member Eric Liedtke said in a statement.

The initiative all began in 2017, and Adidas did really well that year, selling one million pairs of shoes made with the ocean plastic. They then more than quadrupled that total of sales in 2018, selling five million pairs. And in 2019, they’re certainly not slowing down, with a plan to produce 11 million pairs of shoes as part of the partnership.

This isn’t the first time Adidas has taken strides toward improving the environment. They recently signed the Climate Protection Charter for the Fashion Industry, which means they plan to address the climate impact of the fashion sector and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 30 percent by 2030.

Adidas has also stated that by 2024, they want to be using only recycled polyester in their products wherever they can. Additionally, they only source sustainably produced cotton and stopped using plastic bags in its stores in 2016.

“Sustainability at Adidas goes far beyond recycled plastic,” Adidas executive board member Gil Steyaert said in a statement. “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.”

Adidas/Parley

Adidas is selling several kinds of sneakers using Parley recycled ocean plastic available on their website. There’s the Alphabounce+Parley, which contains a woven upper made from upcycled plastic trash. And the shoes in the Adidas x Parley Collection are made of plastic trash collected from remote beaches and coastal communities.

“I’m lucky to be a part of that change within Adidas, and happy to use my voice and position in the company to inspire our people, the industry and beyond to protect our oceans and the world around us,” Liedtke said.

And don’t worry about price. They’re actually pretty affordable with a shoe for every price range. The sustainable shoes star at just $55 and go up to $300.

You can find the Parley shoe collection here.

Are you a proponent of cleaning up the ocean? What do you think of Adidas’ strides in helping the environment, and their partnership with Parley for the Oceans? Will you be buying a pair of these ocean plastic sneaks?