For the 2021 P/E collection, Adidas will propose Futurecraft.loop : 100% recyclable sneakers, we decrypt on GreenyBirdDress :
Recall and history of the Adidas brand with recycling :
In 2015, Adidas and Parley for the Oceans presented a shoe with a fully manufactured upper made from recycled marine plastic waste fibres and yarns. I mention this in every speech 😃
Today, Adidas is committed to using only recycled polyester in all of its products by 2024.
The un-manufacturing and manufacturing stages of the sneakers :
Once the worn pair is recovered, it is washed and reduced to a granular state. These are new polyester yarns from other basketball pairs, in order to make these sneakers. These worn pairs are totally melted to recreate new sneakers. Thus, the loop is closed: we speak of a circular economy “in closed loop”.
The Futurecraft.loop project is a answer to the problem of plastic waste, especially in the seas. This project proposes a circular manufacturing model in which raw materials can be recycled to infinity. In marketing terms, we are talking about regenerated material.
Sports shoes are usually made from a complex mixture of materials and elements that are glued together, making them a product that can only be recycled into lower-value, lower-quality items.
These brand new pairs are based on an éco-design approach produced, mixing matter circularity : they are composed of a single material and assembled without any glue. Each element is made of 100% recyclable TPU transformed into yarn, knitted, shaped and assembled with a “Boost” midsole.
There are two types of TPU, the one used here is TPU AU (polyester) : they hydrolyze but they have a very good resistance to oils.
Once the shoes are at the end of life, it is up to the owner to bring the pair back to Adidas stores : they are then washed and reduced into granules, then reworked to create the basic material of a new pair of shoes, without any loss or waste. The problem here is finally that circularity and biodegradability must be created under factory conditions. This reminds me of the sneakers of Lenzing, produced in a few materials only (more info HERE)
Tanyaradzwa Sahanga, technology Innovation Manager, said :
We wanted to create a new type of product that we could recover, grind and reuse to make new Adidas products. We were aware that this was an ambitious goal! Moreover, on several occasions, we have been faced with difficult technical problems to overcome, but now that we have made this first breakthrough, the situation has changed! We cannot create a “circular” future alone, we need everyone to participate.