Allbirds and Adidas Team up on New Carbon-Zero Shoe
Footwear competitors Adidas and Allbirds, co-founded by former All White, Tim Brown, are setting aside strategic and intellectual property concerns and embarking upon an unusual collaboration to quickly and jointly develop a high-performance athletic shoe with little to no carbon impact, Christina Brinkley reports for Vogue.
The concept, which has been in the works for nine months, is for a mass-market shoe technical enough to compete at the Olympics or other world-class events while reducing the carbon footprint created throughout its life cycle to something near zero. “Nobody is looking for a sustainable shoe,” says, Brown, 39, emphasising the need for a shoe with technical prowess that would be the basis for future designs that could be manufactured by either Adidas or Allbirds.
The companies have not yet identified which sport the shoe will be designed for, but they say they are moving quickly and intend to have a shoe completed within a year.
Vice president of Adidas brand strategy James Carnes and Brown spoke about the initiative as a race to develop a zero-carbon shoe – measured throughout the life of the shoe from design to production, shipping, warehousing and its end-of-life in a trash heap – that could improve upon the impact of 20 billion pairs of shoes manufactured each year. “We feel the urgency. It’s a race,” Carnes says.
Original article by Christina Brinkley, Vogue, May 28, 2020.