Retail Innovation Shout Out: Adidas Transforms Marine Plastic Waste into Apparel

In honor of Earth Day this year, Adidas announced that it will be partnering with Parley for the Oceans, a design and environmental awareness organization, to develop materials made from marine plastic waste. Approximately 10 million metric tons of plastic waste end up in the ocean each year. As part of a broader initiative to reduce its environmental footprint, Adidas plans to work with Parley for the Oceans to retrieve some of this marine plastic and transform it into fibers that will be used in the company’s clothing and potentially shoe uppers.

This isn’t the first time that Parlay for the Oceans has worked with an apparel or footwear company. Last year, the organization worked with G-Star Raw and Bionic Yarns to create a line of jeans that incorporated fibers created from recycled marine plastics.

While these initiatives are not going to solve the world’s plastic waste problem overnight, companies like Adidas are finding innovative ways to incorporate new fibers into their products while helping reduce environmental waste. The Adidas project is still in its infancy (the products have not been launched yet) but it will be interesting to see how environmentally-friendly they really are and, more importantly, how consumers will respond once they are able to purchase them.

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