World Footwear


Sustainability is key for footwear companies

May 29, 2017 World
Sustainability is key for footwear companies
Recycling, using eco-friendly materials and providing good working conditions. Are we there yet? What can companies in this industry do to be more sustainable?
What happens to shoes at the end of their useful lives?

Sneakers and shoes usually contain leather, rubber, foam, textile and metal. All of these materials are hard to separate and decompose. More, if left alone decomposing, they slowly release methane.

Furthermore, a lot of glues and other harmful chemicals, that are used in the production of footwear, can also damage the environment. More and more, footwear companies will have to find ways to use biodegradable or eco-friendly materials in their shoe production ( in a cost-effective way).

Sustainability goes further
It’s much more than just recycling. It’s about where footwear producers get their materials from. Resources in our planet are scarce and companies also have the responsibility to ensure their consumers they are doing their part protecting our world.

Why does it matter so much?

It matters not only to the global good, but especially to consumers, who are aware of the environmental issues we are currently living and are looking for safer alternatives in their purchasing decisions.

This means trying to find and use materials that somehow do not warm the environment. For instance, Gucci made a collection of shoes using a biodegradable material called bio-plastic, which is an alternative to petrochemical plastic.

We can also think about working conditions, when talking about sustainability. Many businessmen are relocating their factories to poor regions and paying fair wages to workers, to improve the quality of life there.

There’s a lot to talk about being sustainable. And while now it may be an opportunity to grasp a competitive advantage, in the near future it may become mandatory for all companies to be more sustainable.