By Lew Blaustein, GreenSportsBlog
Adidas, with its Parley for the Oceans line of athletic footwear (and apparel) made from repurposed and upcycled materials, including plastic ocean waste, is a strong contender for most sustainable sneaker company in the world. Rival Nike would no doubt protest, citing its super-light, super-efficient Flyknitsneaker line which reduces waste by 80 percent, as the reason why they should be the green champ.
But both athletic shoe giants had better watch out for a new entrant into the mix, Paris-based fashion brand Veja.
The primary goal of Veja co-founders Sébastien Kopp and François-Ghislain Morillion, is to manufacture sneakers from the most ecological materials and ethical suppliers possible. According to Alyssa Danigelis, writing in the November 12 issue of Environmental Leader, “The company uses raw materials sourced from organic farming and ecological agriculture in Brazil.” The footwear is manufactured there as well.
Danigelis reports that the duo call Veja “their ‘project,’ with one foot in design and the other in social responsibility.” On the latter, Kopp and Morillion are committed to protecting the Amazon, upcycling materials, and being transparent about chemical testing.
“A lot of our clients are discovering what is behind Veja after they buy one or two pairs,” Kopp told Andrea Lo of CNN Business. “[They] usually come back for more after learning the brand’s story.”