From the plastic bag tax, to banning straws and microbeads, industry is slowly but surely waking up to the revelation that plastic does not, in fact, equal fantastic. After decades of pumping plastic into seemingly every imaginable sphere of our lives, the breaks are now on – but as you can imagine, it’s taking a while to stop the non-biodegradable juggernaut that is plastic.
For Adidas, polyester is the material of choice for around half of its entire product range. But as a global leader in the sporting goods industry, it’s fitting that the company leads the way with sustainability, too. Giving itself a six-year timeframe, the company has vowed to phase out ‘virgin’ polyester – that’s polyester which is newly-manufactured, fresh from the petrochemical feedstock – from its products. Instead, they’ll be working towards exclusively using recycled polyester in their clothing and footwear.
This latest pledge comes as further evidence of the sportswear giant’s ongoing commitment to sustainability and creatively eliminating waste materials. The eco-innovative Adidas x Wanderlust yoga collection was launched on 21 June, 2017, to tie in with International Yoga Day. The collection marked the continued partnership between Adidas and Wanderlust; a collaboration rooted in mindful sport and fitness experiences that also sees a globally expanded event schedule.
This followed on from the company’s ground-breaking partnership with Parley for the Oceans, which since 2016 has unveiled performance products created using Parley Ocean Plastic.
Along with the football jerseys worn by Bayern Munich and Real Madrid, representing the first apparel to be produced under the partnership, the UltraBOOST Uncaged Parley was also the first mass production footwear to be created using Parley Ocean Plastic. Both products are made from up-cycled marine plastic waste recovered via Parley interception and clean-up operations in coastal areas of the Maldives, with the aim of driving global awareness and comprehensive solutions to the threat of plastic pollution in the oceans.
While recycled plastic is currently more expensive than its virgin counterpart, industry experts believe this will change in the coming years, with the price gap closing as more and more companies join the sustainable bandwagon and make the switch to recycled materials.
It’s all supply and demand. If consumers demand sustainable products that is what will be supplied. And as demand from manufacturers for recycled plastics increases, plastic suppliers will in turn fight to get a slice of the green pound, breading competitive pricing.