Uncork the answer to better, greener footwear

Uncork the answer to better, greener footwear

June 14, 2024
ReCORK, a company that creates carbon-negative composite materials using natural recycled corks, is setting out to change the footwear industry.

In my 20s, I earned the nickname “Shoes.” It was a fitting, if somewhat obvious, nickname considering I worked in a shoe store and had a collection of heels that would have made Imelda Marcos jealous. Given my background, I know a thing or two about shoes. I can measure a foot in my sleep, I know what indicators to consider when determining if a shoe fits correctly, and I can decipher a shoe material sticker at a glance. So, when I learned about a company that was using natural material, including recycled cork, to engineer a better, more sustainable shoe, I was intrigued.

Laura Davis, the editor in chief of New Equipment Digest, recently reported on ReCORK, a company that’s know for manufacturing carbon-negative composite materials using natural recycled corks. The innovative company has recently set its sights on the fashion industry by introducing recycled cork midsole for shoes.

Below is an excerpt from her blog post:

The idea is to create a functional replacement for petroleum-based foam that consists of more than 75% recycled natural cork. The first version of the midsole has been used in the Jasper Chukka shoe made by ReCORK's founding company, SOLE.

The Jasper Chukka is "designed to replicate the cozy comfort of a puffy jacket, without the heavy reliance on petrochemical-based synthetics".

The shoe features a midsole made from post-consumer recycled wine corks giving wearers a lightweight, flexible, durable, and cushioning alternative that's also carbon-negative. It actually removes more carbon from the atmosphere than it adds.

Read the entire blog post

The Lighter Side of Manufacturing

Created by the editors of Plant Services and New Equipment Digest, The Lighter Side of Manufacturing is a feel-good blog that showcases how advances in science, math, engineering, and technology are making our world more whimsical. Here’s another post that is guaranteed to brighten your day.

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