We are past the days of overloading the planet—which never should have come to begin with—but not all is lost. In 2018 the July Without Plastic campaign became garnered attention as we began to see laws banning straws and plastic bags as well as several actions that demonstrated the importance of dreaming up a world with less trash. People have begun to think more about this excess waste, questioning the use of disposable plastic altogether.
One of the most interesting debates we have seen is that coming from Modefica, which questions absolute truths like none other. So let's get right to the point: can recycled PET not be considered a sustainable solution for the fashion industry?
First of all, let's talk about responsibility. Extended responsibility falls to companies. That means that what we do in order to sell something becomes our problem forever. Basically, "you become eternally responsible for what you produce”—and this is even more so if it’s made of plastic. When this product is then purchased, the responsibility belongs to the consumer as well. This is known as shared responsibility.
If it’s up to us, our shoes will not end up in landfills ("us" includes you, our customers, and Insecta). Our close the loop project allows you to return your used shoes when you’re done with them. We then turn it into components for new shoes! And regardless of the composition of the fabric (which can be 100% PET or PET + recycled cotton), it can be turned into stuffing for new insoles. No landfills, and no plastic ending up where it shouldn’t.
When the problem is microplastic, it’s worth remembering that this is a problem much more linked to consistently washed clothes that release a residue into the water system. Shoes should not be machine washed or soaked, though, right? We advise you to clean ours with a damp cloth or soft brush. The dirt comes out, but the microplastics do not.
We work with recycled materials whenever possible, giving new life to materials already in existence that would otherwise become junk. This is very much the case with PET bottles that we turn into fabric—to give you an idea, in the 5 years our company has existed, about 10,532 plastic bottles have been turned into shoes, and many have already been returned and recycled, instead of going to waste.
We understand that this system may not be perfect. But as we like to say, here at Insecta we have the humility to know that we will not be able to totally heal the world, however much we wish we could. Our goal is to encourage small actions so that everyone knows they can pitch in and help, and that little by little change does occur.
And besides all this, it is worth remembering that we are always researching and working to create better solutions. Nothing is final. What we do can always be improved.
Want to continue this conversation? Have any doubts? Want to know more about how we make our shoes? Let's talk. Contact us via our social networks or at firstname.lastname@example.org