In the not-so-far future, our products will no longer be seen as waste at their end of life, but rather as sources of valuable resources for new products. adidas has already made the first steps toward creating a closed-loop product. We recycle excess pre-market product, handle large volumes of goods for further distribution and recycle those products that fail to meet our quality standards by redirecting them from our distribution centers in Germany.
While we engage with local waste managers, the many and varied waste management schemes in place where our products are used make the end-of-life stage a difficult one for us to address. Often, we also collect used sporting goods from consumers, check their quality and donate them for a good cause, either directly to people in need or to dedicated organizations. Ultimately, this circular mindset has resulted in our in-store product Take Back program.
CLOSED LOOP SOLUTIONS
adidas is also working on making products easy to recycle with the goal of completely eliminating waste. The first fully recyclable running shoe, “Futurecraft Loop”, is made from a single recyclable material from sole to laces and is fused together without the need for glue. After an initial test phase with 200 athletes in 2019, the shoes were returned to adidas and the company recycled them into components for new shoes. This second generation of “Futurecraft Loop” shoes is already back in the testers’ hands. The market launch is planned for 2021.