Adidas to Launch Plant-Based Shoes Made from Mushroom Leather

Published Monday, January 4, 2021
by Spencer Whaley, The Beet

If the only thing keeping you from accomplishing your New Years Resolution to get more exercise is a new pair of running shoes, then you’re in luck: Adidas has just announced that it is developing a line of shoes made from mushroom-based leather. Created using mycelium, Adidas’ newest “leather” will join the brand's line of animal-free versions of its most iconic shoes, launched earlier this year as part of its sustainability initiative.

Adidas Working on Launching New Mushroom Leather Shoes

In a press release, the company detailed how this new product fits into the company’s more extensive sustainability goals, saying, “Together with partners, Adidas is developing a new material, a purely biological leather alternative made from mycelium, and will use it for the very first time in the creation of footwear. In addition, Adidas has committed to ‘Vier Pfoten,’ an animal protection organization, to completely ban furs from the manufacturing of its products.”

Adidas partnered with the biotechnology startup Bolt Threads to create the mushroom-leather textile. Adidas isn’t the only popular luxury brand to partner with Bolt Threads. Some of the most well-known names in fashion including Stella McCartney, Lululemon, and luxury fashion group Kering, which manages the development of Gucci, Saint Laurent, Bottega Veneta, Balenciaga, and Alexander McQueen have also joined forces with Bolt Threads to use the mycelium-based leather to create products that are as chic as they are sustainable.

Mushroom leather companies like Bolt Threads and Mycoworks boast an impressive list of partner companies and celebrity investors–both Natalie Portman and John Legend have invested–just goes to show that investing in sustainable solutions in the luxury space certainly in vogue. Although Adidas’ newest shoes have yet to be released, once they are, all of those who have pledged to be more plant-based and active this new year can lace up knowing that they’ve accomplished not one, but two of their goals.

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