We live in a world where, now more than ever, we’re realizing our impact on the environment. Today, we wanted to recognize the sustainability efforts of one of the biggest brands in tennis, as well as one of the largest sporting goods manufacturers in the world: adidas. The reason we’re focusing on adidas today is because of all the major sportswear brands, they are the brand making a change.
One of adidas’ long-term goals has been to positively change lives through sport. This is paired with the belief they must do their part to ensure there’s always a field to play on, an ocean to surf, or a mountain to climb. So what have they done to actually act on these beliefs? To answer that question, let’s take a look at some of their recent initiatives:
Adopting a Holistic Sustainability Roadmap for 2020
I won’t dive into the details too much, but on the product side, it’s important to note 3 of the brand’s key focuses:
- Developing manufacturing processes that minimize the use of water.
- Utilizing environmentally-friendly materials in products.
- Reducing absolute energy consumption and CO2 emissions.
On the people side, adidas wants to:
- Empower individuals at all levels of their supply chain.
- Educate people around the world about their overall mental, physical, and nutritional health.
- Inspire other companies to take action by leading by example.
Replacing Virgin Polyester with Recycled Polyester
The goal here is to completely replace freshly-made polyester in products with recycled polyester by 2024. Creating polyester requires a lot of water and energy, and by the end of its life, it can harm the environment if not properly disposed of or recycled. Adidas’ first steps to achieving this goal began in 2012 at the London Olympic Games, where the brand outfitted their volunteers with uniforms made from recycled polyester. Fast forward to 2019, and many of the brand’s apparel pieces and shoes are made more consciously.
Teaming Up with Parley for the Oceans
In 2015, adidas introduced a footwear concept with an upper made entirely of yarns and filaments reclaimed and recycled from marine plastic waste. These products leveraging Parley Ocean Plastic have continually evolved, and can now be found across a number of adidas’ apparel and shoe lines. We covered this development here at Tennis Express during the 2019 Australian Open, where adidas first launched high-performance tennis shoes created with the “upcycled” materials. In 2019, adidas will produce 11 million pairs of shoes containing recycled ocean plastic.
Conceived all the way back around 1994, this project involves the creation of the world’s first 100% recyclable, high-performance running shoe. While technology and materials weren’t up to the task back then, adidas believes they are now. Currently in testing, this revolutionary shoe will hopefully be the beginning of the end of waste. The name “Futurecraft.Loop” comes from the desire for a “closed loop”, or “circular”, manufacturing model, where raw materials can be repurposed repeatedly into new performance shoes. At the end of their usable life, the shoes would be returned to adidas to be cleaned, ground down, and melted into material for a new pair of shoes with zero excess waste.
Needless to say, adidas has some pretty lofty sustainability goals ahead of them, but it appears they’re only ramping up their efforts to meet the challenges. Here at Tennis Express, we’ll be keeping a close eye on developments, and are rooting for the brand to achieve their exceptional 2024 target. We hope you enjoyed this inside look at one of the most innovative sporting goods companies in the world. To stay up-to-date on the brand with three stripes, subscribe below, and check out TennisExpress.com for their latest tennis apparel and shoes.
About the Author: Chris Worman
Weight: 190 lbs
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