There are an estimated 5 trillion pieces of plastic floating through the world’s oceans, enough to fill almost 600 jumbo jets. Part of the monumental task of de-cluttering the world’s waterways involves figuring out exactly what to do with all of that discarded plastic.
German athletic retailer Adidas is trying to repurpose some of that waste into something useful. Working in conjunction with conservation organization Parley for the Oceans, the brand recently unveiled the world’s first shoe with an upper made entirely of recycled ocean plastic and illegal deep-sea gillnets.
The nets were collected by conservation organization Sea Shepherd during a recent four-month expedition, during which conservationists tracked an illegal poaching vessels, ultimately seizing its nets.
For now, the shoe is simply a prototype. However, adidas did announce that, with support from Parley for the Oceans, it will be releasing a line of consumer products built from reclaimed ocean plastics later this year.
“We are extremely proud that adidas is joining us in this mission and is putting its creative force behind this partnership to show that it is possible to turn ocean plastic into something cool,” remarked Parley for the Oceans founder Cyrill Gutsch.