Sustainable brand Ecoalf is preparing to launch an innovative pair of trainers made from ocean plastics and algae.
The new range of footwear is made from single-use plastics, collected from the ocean floor.
The Spanish label uses about five plastic bottles, collected from the Mediterranean Sea, to create each pair of Shao trainers.
The shoes are part of the brand’s Ocean Waste collection.
Moreover, there is no waste generated during the manufacturing processes.
The plastic waste is processed into yarn, later used to create the black knitted upper sole.
The upper part is designed to fit like a sock.
Sustainable brand Ecoalf
The outsole is composed of an invasive species of algae that grows in lakes and rivers.
To date, the algae-based material provides the most sustainable performance-driven foam in the world.
“Our ‘Upcycling the Oceans’ initiative began in Spain in 2015,” said the founder of Ecoalf, Javier Goyeneche.
“To date, we’ve taken out 250 tons of waste from the bottom of the Mediterranean Sea. The operation involved 3,000 fishermen and 33 ports. Moreover, we are expanding,” he added.
The philosophy behind the collection is simple.
Achieve zero waste, by reusing the plastic bottles developed with PET, a recycled polyester.
The insole has been eliminated to reduce the number of materials used, along with the shoelaces.
Also, to minimise fabric waste, the label is printed instead of being attached to the shoes.
Saving the environment
“Ecoalf saves the environment because it cleans the oceans while giving a second life to plastic,” said Goyeneche.
On top of this, the harvest of this aggressive species of algae helps to preserve plants and animal life that depend on fresh water for their survival.
By not utilising conventional foam, the sustainable brand Ecoalf is also reducing the consumption of oil.
The sustainable fashion brand has trialled over 250 materials extracted from plastic bottles, discarded fishing nets, post-consumer coffee grounds, and post-industrial cotton and wool.
Goyeneche said that this alone is the reason why other companies shy away from creating sustainable fashion:
“It’s hard to find the right technology to transform waste into high quality recycled materials. Even harder to find factories with the capabilities of manufacturing sustainable goods properly”, he continued.
Every season the sustainable brand Ecoalf will search for new, innovative materials with a low impact on the environment.
“We hope that Ecoalf will inspire others to start using recycled materials,” he concluded.
Ecoalf, which ships to the UK, launches its Ocean Waste collection in September.
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