Since introducing their Futurecraft initiative late last year, Adidas has shown no signs of slowing down their exploration – and intention – of incorporating additive manufacturing and other next generation digital fabrication techniques into their supply chain in the not-too-distant future.
Tomorrow, in honor of World Oceans Day, Adidas and ocean conservation group Parley for the Oceans will be launching the first 50 pairs of the Adidas x Parley shoe; the world’s first performance running shoe made from upcycled plastic waste using Tailored Fibre Technology, a production process that falls under the Futurecraft initiative.
The new and versatile material, aptly named Parley Ocean Plastic, is made by turning ocean plastic collected from the Maldives into technical yarn fibers that can then be used for performance products. The shoe is the first in a series of performance products that Adidas plans to produce using the new material.
Says Cyrill Gutsch, Founder of Parley for the Oceans:
“So much work has happened behind the scenes since we launched our partnership with Adidas. We are creating new standards, new materials and technologies that are so different to those the sporting goods industry is used to. It is an ongoing challenge, but we achieved the first step. Now we can replace new plastic with recycled marine plastic debris: Parley Ocean Plastic®. We can create footwear and apparel products with it and we are ready to scale it up.”
As of June 8th, people will be able to enter for a chance to win one of 50 pairs of the one-of-a-kind sneakers by taking part in an Instagram contest and sharing how they pledge to avoid single use plastic items and support Parley’s Ocean Plastic Program. Final details will be announced on the Adidas Twitter feed later this week and the competition will close on July 31, 2016.
As for incorporating the material on a larger scale, Adidas and Parley will begin integrating Parley Ocean Plastic into other lines of performance products later in the year.