Japanese sportswear giant Asics Corp has outlined sustainability targets for 2030 that include switching all of the polyesters in its products to recycled ones.
In 2019, Asics developed a recycled polyester roadmap for each product category and accelerated the use of recycled polyester in new products under development. From 2020, the company expects this initiative to begin increasing the proportion of recycled polyester in products overall.
The announcement comes as part of an update of its five-year sustainability plan to 2020, in which Asics says that last year it managed to reduce CO2 emissions per pair of shoes by 27.9% during the manufacturing process, compared with 2015 baseline levels. This is against a target of 10% by 2020.
“2020 is the final year of our current five-year strategic plan. While we have met many of this plan’s sustainability targets ahead of schedule, our work doesn’t stop there,” says Motoi Oyama, chairman and CEO of Asics Corporation. “We have already started drawing up new plans toward 2030, based on the new materiality analysis we completed at the end of 2019. In line with the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), we will continue to strive for a sustainable future for our business and the planet.”
As part of its objectives, Asics says it is scaling up its efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Its new commitment is in line with global efforts to limit average temperature increases to 1.5 degrees above pre-industrial levels, aligned with a net-zero future by 2050.
Asics will also introduce a new sustainable shoebox from July 2020 that features water-based rather than oil-based ink. With this new box, Asics will reduce the total amount of ink used by approximately 50% compared with earlier boxes. The design also requires around 10% less cardboard, making it less carbon-intensive to produce, which the company claims will save around 1,200 tonnes in CO2 emissions per year.
Earlier this month, Asics’ investment subsidiary, Ventures Corporation, took a stake in Israeli startup Seevix Material Sciences, which develops and manufactures synthetic spider silk. Last October, it announced it had taken an equity stake in Spanish startup Pyrates Smart Fabrics with plans to use its advanced and responsible materials in a capsule collection.