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Brief Published: 17 Nov 2016

Upscaling Upcycling: Adidas x Parley for the Oceans

Adidas x Parley for the Oceans

Adidas has unveiled the Ultra Boost Uncaged Parley running shoe – the first mass-produced footwear created using Parley Ocean Plastic. An initial drop of 7,000 pairs launched on November 15, with the brand committed to producing one million by the end of 2017.

First launched as a limited run of 50 in 2015, the initiative is an example of adidas’ collaborative approach to innovation. It also forms part of its larger commitment to increasing the use of sustainable materials and processes in its products, implementing the Parley A.I.R strategy of Avoid, Intercept and Redesign.

Made from a mix of recycled ocean plastics, the running shoe is created using new technologies specifically engineered to upcycle marine plastic debris into technical yarn fibres, without compromising on performance qualities. Each pair’s Primeknit upper reuses 11 plastic bottles, with the 2017 target of one million pairs projected to recycle and repurpose at least 11 million bottles, retrieved from coastal areas by the Parley Global Clean-up Network.

“Nobody can save the oceans alone. Each of us can play a role in the solution,” says Cyrill Gutsch, founder of Parley for the Oceans. “It’s in the hands of the creative industries to reinvent faulty materials, products and business models. The consumer can boost the demand for change. But it’s up to eco innovation leaders, like Adidas, to make change a reality. With this shoe we demonstrate what’s possible. It’s a flag, an invitation to join our movement.”

For further insight into sustainable wardrobe solutions, see The New Fashion Landscape.