Currently, about 50 percent of the material used in a number of Adidas' products is virgin polyester.
Adding to its effort to increase the sustainability of its supply chain, Adidas has committed to using only recycled polyester in all its shoes and clothing by 2024.
Recycled polyester is 10-20 percent more expensive than fresh material, but industry experts believe the price gap between recycled and new plastics will close as more companies shift to renewables and suppliers increase their ability to produce recycled materials in large quantities. Environmentalists have hailed the move to expand on the recycling the already do with their Parley line, and that Adidas estimates they will save in the range of 40 tons of plastic this year alone. The initiative will eliminate more than one billion plastic straws per year.
The company also reportedly said its spring and summer apparel lines for next year will contain almost 41 percent recycled polyester. In particular, products made from recycled plastic will be much easier and faster to dry after washing. The material is cheap and versatile, but governments and consumers are increasingly aware of its huge environmental costs.
The pledge specifically said the company would eliminate "virgin" plastics. Research shows there will be more plastic than fish by weight in the world's oceans by 2050.
Parley for the Oceans has also partnered with American Express in its plan to introduce the first credit card made primarily using ocean plastic.
The Four Seasons, Hilton, and the Hyatt are also getting on board with the idea of using more environmentally-friendly products, pledging to ditch all plastic straws by the end of this year. "The reuse rate is bad compared to other materials", it notes, "58% of paper and up to 90% of iron and steel is recycled".
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