Adidas ramps up sustainability initiatives with newest recycling commitment

According to the athleticwear company, Adidas produced more than five million pairs of shoes containing recycled plastic waste In 2018, and has now announced that it plans to more than double that figure in 2019. This initiative will be bolstered by the company’s partnership with environmental organization and global collaboration network, Parley for the Oceans. The organization works to intercept plastic waste on beaches before it can reach oceans, at which point the material is upcycled and made into a yarn that is “becoming a key component of the upper material of Adidas footwear,” Adidas explained in a press statement. 

In addition to footwear, the company also uses this recycled material to produce other Adidas apparel, including the Champions League jersey for FC Bayern Munich and German tennis player Alexander Zverev’s outfit for the Australian Open.On top of manufacturing, Adidas is also boosting its environmental activism throughout its different facilities. “We also continue to improve our environmental performance during the manufacturing of our products,” said Adidas executive board member Gil Steyaert, who is responsible for global operations. “This includes the use of sustainable materials, the reduction of CO2 emissions and waste prevention. In 2018 alone, we saved more than 40 tons of plastic waste in our offices, retail stores, warehouses and distribution centers worldwide and replaced it with more sustainable solutions.”The list of initiatives boosting Adidas’ commitment doesn’t end there though – the company also signed the Climate Protection Charter for the Fashion Industry at the UN Climate Change Conference, agreed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 30 percent by 2030, and pledged to use only recycled polyester in every product and on every application they can by 2024.If that weren’t enough to convince consumers that activism means action for the company, Adidas is also a founding member of the Better Cotton Initiative, sources only sustainably produced cotton, and stopped using plastic bags in stores 2016.However, the company’s record isn’t exactly blot free. Plastic is still used in Adidas’ transport packaging, although the company has donated €1.5 million to sustainable fashion organization Fashion for Good – a figure reportedly equivalent to the cost of the packaging’s environmental impact – as penance. 

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