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Environment friendly shoes can still be stylish
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Did you know that the sole of a shoe takes 1000 years to totally decompose? Did you also know that the footwear industry is one of the leading causes of carbon emissions and waste, with the production of leather requiring 20 times more energy that synthetic materials?
If this is news to you, then you should consider the fact that more and more consumers are becoming aware of environmental issues, meaning that footwear designers and manufacturers now have to take this into account when creating and marketing their latest products.
It is widely accepted that there are two ways to approach making environmentally friendly shoes. The first is to use naturally sustainable materials; the second is by using recycled materials. By using sustainable and recyclable materials in the manufacturing process, many brands now recognize the importance of making a positive environmental impact on the industry. And let’s face it; is there a better way to start reducing your ecological footprint than with your shoes?
Several companies, such as El Naturalista and Patagonia Footwear, are now using eco latex and natural rubber, which are harvested from a variety of natural plants. In fact, the number of materials that are used in the production of eco-friendly shoes is quite staggering. Bamboo, hemp, rice rubber, recycled rubber, eco latex, coconut, and organic cotton, as well as water based glues, are all now utilised in this fast growing division of the footwear industry.
As evidence that the major world footwear brands are getting in on the act, Puma have launched an eco-friendly version of their famed suede shoe. The sportswear giants say that the shoe has been designed “with environmental impact in mind” and that the upper, sock liner, laces and sub-lining were all made using recycled materials, while an “innovative new material” has been used to develop the outsole. Puma also say that the eco version of the shoe is incredibly lightweight, which means that there is a considerable cut in fossil fuels required for transport, with a saving of up to 15 tonnes per 10,000 pairs of shoes shipped. You can see the shoe by following this link: Puma Eco Suede Classic
With a focus on developing new production methods and techniques, Innolux is working with major brands to develop eco-friendly shoes in the luxury shoe manufacturer’s Vietnamese and Cambodian production plants. The locally-available natural supply of eco-friendly rubber and latex provides shoe manufacturers in this part of the world with a great opportunity to utilise these natural resources in the production process.
A great source of information about eco-friendly footwear, and also an online Eco Shop is: Planet Shoes