Clarks and UGG Unveil Sustainable Footwear Innovations
Clarks has launched what it claims to be its “ most durable sneaker yet, ” while UGG is launching shoes made from responsibly sourced plant-based materials.
The shoes in the new “Origin” line from Clarks have been designed to reduce waste and improve recyclability; they contain no glue and are made from five parts, each of which can be hidden at the end of its life.
The five-piece is an outsole made from 51% recycled content; an insole containing recycled ethylene vinyl acetate, recycled rubber and a responsibly sourced sheepskin lining; a responsibly sourced suede upper; Laces 100% recycled polyester and single-material nylon thread. The latter component replaces the glues that often make shoes difficult to recycle.
Along with improving recyclability and reducing the material footprint of footwear in upstream processes, Clarks says the redesign has also reduced product-related emissions. It has not published data on emissions over the entire shoe’s lifecycle, but studies from organizations such as the Ellen MacArthur Foundation have shown how recycled materials have a smaller CO2e footprint than their own. blank counterparts. The virgin leather components, meanwhile, come from tanneries that have formally committed to reducing their climate impact.
Clarks Marketing Director Tara McRae said: “We are known for the quality and durability of our shoes, which inherently means we support sustainable fashion.
“But we still have a lot to do. We are becoming more sustainable every day, from sourcing more sustainable materials to supporting better working conditions for the people who make our shoes. Our brand new shoe, “Origin” is just one great example of what we can accomplish as a company, designing for a more sustainable future. “
It is estimated that 300 million pairs of shoes around the world are thrown away each year. In the UK the redistribution rate and the recycling rate are low, mainly due to a lack of infrastructure and workers to process the products, as the usual combination of glues, rubber components, in vinyl and leather make them difficult to recycle. About 85% of the shoes thrown away in the UK each year will end up in landfills or incinerators.
On a related note, UGG this week launched a shoe collection incorporating renewable plant-based materials that are certified carbon neutral. Called “Plant Power,” the collection includes plush wedge shoes, plush sandals and desert boots.
The plush platforms and sandals feature foam outsoles made from sugarcane, rather than traditional petroleum-based materials. UGG claims that this material is carbon neutral, in that the plant removes CO2 from the atmosphere as it grows, and that it uses less water than many alternative crops. The fluffy components are made from TENCEL Lyocell – an innovative material made by turning wood pulp into cellulosic fibers. The trees grown to produce the material are certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) and the Forest Certification Endorsement Program (PEFC).
The desert boots, on the other hand, have a TENCEL Lyocell lining and an upper made from a cotton blend and certified sustainable hemp. The soles are made in small batches from LACTAE HEVEA latex. In the production of this material, no tree is felled.
UGG’s overall sustainable development strategy, Feel Good, details commitments to achieve at least 35% sustainable materials across its entire product portfolio by 2027. Materials classified as “sustainable” are those that are recycled or reused; those that are of plant or bio-based origin and those that are certified. At the same time, UGG will strive to improve the longevity and recyclability of products.
The brand has already produced leather that is 100% certified by the Leather Working Group and 98% recycled wool or by-product. Leather and wool are the materials most used by UGG. She also worked with TENCEL to develop a plush blend of wool and lyocell.
Here you will find comprehensive information on the sustainability goals of parent brand UGG Deckers and the progress made to date.