Eco-friendly Footwear

Following in the footsteps of the NOHARM eco brand…

End-of-life issues are among the thorniest in sustainability, but two footwear players are taking it on. This spring, Waltham, Mass.-based Earth Footwear is celebrating the 40th anniversary of Earth Day with a spring ’10 launch of its biodegradable sole, which will be rolled out across the line. Joining athletic company Brooks and sneaker brand Simple, Earth will use an additive that helps outsoles biodegrade 10 times faster than a normal shoe. The additive is the newest environmentally oriented action from the brand, which already uses water-based adhesives, recycled PET linings and insole boards made of recycled milk cartons.

New York-based Anthony L&S footwear is launching three collections for men and boys under the Bob Marley name, many of which have a green twist. Shoes in the One Love collection feature recycled natural rubber foxing tape and recycled EVA in the outsole. The more aggressive Fashion collection will pair recycled crepe foxing with suedes, leather, canvas and nubucks. And the more casual Vulcanized collection uses the leather and suede on more skate-inspired sneaker looks. Targeted to specialty boutiques and mass-market retailers, the $30-to-$130 line will deliver in June and July.