Allbirds Releases Sugarcane Shoes, Secures Leonardo DiCaprio Backing


Fashion / News 28 Views 0

Within three short years, direct-to-consumer shoe brand Allbirds, has gained a cultlike following for its footwear made of natural materials like wool and eucalyptus, and now sugarcane can be added to that list. On Aug. 1, the San Francisco-based company announced it had developed a new technology derived from sugarcane to replace the typical petroleum-based EVA used in shoe soles, simultaneously revealing it had secured an undisclosed investment amount from actor and environmentalist Leonardo DiCaprio. Calling it their “biggest moment as a company,” cofounder Tim Brown said in a phone interview that it had the potential to impact the footwear business deeply, as it was the first environmentally friendly option for shoe soles, and the firm plans to make it available to the footwear industry at large. “Part of our ethos is this constant improvement of things that are commonly used and finding better ways to make them to make less of an environmental impact and a better product. The sole was a pretty tough one to crack but we realized from my cofounders previous life working for a biotech firm you could take the petrol out.” Called “SweetFoam,” Allbirds worked with the Brazilian firm Braskem to create the material over a two-year process. The sugarcane is grown

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