Sympatex presents a recycled and climate-neutral children’s shoeSympatex, a leader in the production of functional materials has launched a second innovative lighthouse project this year at Lineapelle
A children’s shoe consisting of up to 90% of recycled raw materials, including the sole made of more than two thirds of recycled rubber. This is the second lighthouse project by Sympatex in close succession, and follows the functional jacket 4.0 presented for the first time at OutDoor Friedrichshafen in June 2017, which was made out of 32 PET bottles. In this way, the “greenest” producer among technical textile specialists demonstrates how it is now possible to create more eco-friendly products even in the shoe industry.
“Already since the foundation of Sympatex, about 30 years ago, the world population has grown by 50%. At the same time, the consumption of resources on earth has increased by up to 1.6 times more than what our planet is able to regenerate. We are currently consuming the reserves of our children, and we will leave them only piles of rubbish,” explains Dr Rüdiger Fox, CEO of Sympatex Technologies.
This does not mean that Sympatex intends to create its own shoe collection. The project was born with the sole aim of indicating a path to create a shoe production able to combine the highest expectations of performance with optimised sustainability. It is an invitation to the entire industry to follow the path these technological opportunities that are already available today.
The base material of the shoe presented at Lineapelle consists of 100% recycled outer fabric and lining laminates already existing in the Sympatex portfolio. The membrane, whose production waste is completely reused via the Sympatex pre-consumer recycling process, is made entirely of polyether-ester. The 100% recycled inner fabrics and linings contain GRS-certified (Global Recycled Standard) and bluesign® certified polyester fibres made out of recycled PET bottles. Compared with the production of 1 kg of polyester fibres obtained from petroleum derivatives, that of 1 kg of recycled polyester fibres like those used, brings considerable environmental advantages: 32% reduction of CO2 emissions, 60% saving in energy consumption and 94% less water consumption. In fact, instead of 60 litres of water, only about three litres of water are used.
Furthermore, Sympatex uses toxic-free and biologically tanned leather for the upper which can be re-integrated into the recycling process. Recycled and recyclable materials are also used for the insoles, padding, reinforcement materials, sewing threads, laces and even for the adhesive labels. The entire shoe therefore consists of 90% recycled materials, which in turn can be re-integrated into the recycling process. In addition, two thirds of the sole are made out of recycled rubber.
In addition to creating recyclable products free of toxic substances, one of the priorities of the Munich-based producer is to compensate the emissions of CO2 generated. In addition to the Sympatex membrane, which since 2017 has been produced in a completely climate-neutral way, the recyclable functional children’s shoe will also be produced by offsetting the environmental emissions of a relative environmental certification program.
Finally, since the beginning of 2017, Sympatex also assists its customers to compensate the CO2 emissions produced. This is done with the collaboration of ClimatePartner, a climate protection consulting company based in Munich. The customers obtain a certificate that can be attached to the label of the manufactured product via a QR code, offering an extra guarantee for the consumer.