Adidas reveals world's first 'fully recyclable' trainer

Sportswear giant Adidas has developed what it calls the world's first "100 per cent recyclable performance running shoe".

Produced under the Futurecraft.Loop brand, all components of the shoe – from the sole and laces to the traditionally woven upper – are made entirely from one single material, called Thermoplastic Polyeutherane (TPU).

Once the shoes come to the end of their "first" life, they can be returned to Adidas where they are washed, ground to pellets and melted into material for components for a new pair of shoes, with zero waste and nothing thrown away.

This is in contrast with the traditional manufacturing methods of sports footwear, which typically include complex material mixes and component glueing, resulting in a shoe which can only be downcycled.

“We set out to create a new type of product that we can take back, grind up and reapply into new Adidas product," said Tanyaradzwa Sahanga, technology and innovation manager at Adidas.

"We knew this was a far-reaching vision in every way; technically and behaviourally.

"There were times when it didn’t seem like we could get over some of the technical hurdles - now we’ve made the first leap, the playing field has changed.

"We cannot create a circular future on our own, we are going to need each other. We’re excited to see this first step come to life as part of the beta launch.”

The first generation of Futurecraft.Loop shoe is now being rolled out as part of a global beta programme across the world’s major cities.

Adidas has recruited 200 testers who will run, return the shoes and share feedback on their experience, ahead of the second-generation product.

The insights will be used to shape the roadmap for the wider consumer release targeted for 2021.

The Futurecraft.Loop project is aimed at tackling the problem of plastic waste, enabling a “closed loop” or circular manufacturing model, where the raw materials can be repurposed again and again.

It is estimated that more than 45 million pairs of running shoes are sold each year in the US alone – with most of them ending up in landfills.

Adidas  Futurecraft.Loop 
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Sportswear giant Adidas has developed what it calls the world's first "100 per cent recyclable performance running shoe". Produced under the Futurecraft.Loop brand, all components of the shoe – from the sole and laces to the traditionally woven upper – are made entirely from one single material, called Thermoplastic Polyeutherane (TPU). Once the shoes come to the end of their "first" life, they can be returned to Adidas where they
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