This week, fashion and sports brand Adidas formally announced that it will never use fur—becoming the 1500th apparel company to join the Fur Free Retailer program organized by animal-rights coalition Fur Free Alliance. The Fur Free Retailer program currently operates in more than 25 countries and counts H&M, Prada, Zara, Gucci, and many other companies which have pledged to no longer include fur in their collections. “We are thrilled to welcome Adidas as the 1500th brand to join our Fur Free Retailer program,” Brigit Oele, program manager of the Fur Free Alliance, said. “Not only is the commitment to a fur-free policy compassionate, it is also forward-thinking. Today’s consumers support fashion brands that care about animals and the environment, and Adidas’ move towards sustainable materials makes it a leader in that regard.”    

Adidas’ vegan shoes

In addition to denouncing fur, Adidas has been innovating its collections to include fully vegan shoes. In 2018, Adidas launched a vegan version of its iconic Stan Smith sneaker, in partnership with designer Stella McCartney—and debuted a second version with colorful star patterns and chunky rainbow shoelaces in 2019. In June 2020, the company announced the launch of its “Our Icons Go Vegan” initiative to veganize its most iconic styles and has thus far added two new styles to the vegan collection: Samba ($80) and Continental 80 ($80), both embossed with a “Adidas Original Vegan” logo and made with animal-free materials, down to the glue. The company is also moving toward more sustainable, plant-based materials, including mycelium—the fast-growing root systems of mushrooms—which it  is currently using to develop new vegan leather shoes

“Adidas is driving the topic of sustainability in all areas of its product range as well as across its entire business operations. We have already been exclusively sourcing more sustainable cotton since 2018, will only be using recycled polyester from 2024 and this year will be launching the first running shoe that is made to be remade,” Frank Henke, Senior Vice President of Sustainability at Adidas, said. “Equally the number of vegan products with three stripes is growing. The permanent renunciation of fur underlines our commitment in searching for and scaling up sustainable material innovations.”

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