Today’s Solutions: September 25, 2022

OK. We wouldn’t blame you if you sighed when you saw the title of this article since we’ve published quite a few stories lately on sustainable shoes. But the fact of the matter is people buy a lot of shoes each year, and most of them are made from synthetic materials.

In 2017, the world spent $64.3 billion dollars on athletic shoes, with running shoes dominating the market. If the average cost per pair were $100 each, that would mean 643,000,000 pairs of athletic shoes were purchased during the year.

That’s a whole lot of synthetic materials used, which is why it’s great news that Reebok has revealed a new plant-based running shoe made from castor beans, algae, eucalyptus, and natural rubber. Called the Forever Floatride GROW, it is made with plants and is part of the company’s plan to reduce the use of petroleum-based plastics in footwear. (They plan to eliminate virgin polyester altogether by 2025.)

Runners are a bit particular about the performance aspects of a shoe, so this is quite a big step. According to Reebok’s Vice President, the shoe is a big deal because although runners want more sustainable shoes, they aren’t willing to compromise on performance. Now it seems that after years of development, they have finally come up with a plant-based shoe that is also meant for high-performance runners.

With this being the latest shoe in a wave of sustainable footwear, it seems plant-based shoes are bound to become the norm in the coming years.

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