For the launch of the new Space Hippie collection, Nike has implemented a circular supply chain aimed at reusing production waste and reducing the carbon debt of each shoe. The “In-Situ Resource Utilization” (ISRU) methodology that inspired Space Hippie’s production process has been conceived for space travels, a specific scenario where what is needed to feed the astronauts and take care of maintenance must necessarily be covered with the resources that are already available in the spaceship, making the most of every single waste material.
Presented in four models characterized by a futuristic aesthetics, the sneakers are the result of the assembly of three different components. Named “space waste yarn”, the knitted upper is made of recycled material from plastic bottles, t-shirts and yarn waste. The insole is the result of recycling production waste from the Vaporfly 4% model and allows a 50% reduction in carbon dioxide emissions compared to similar Nike models. The sole, on the other hand, is a mixture of foams already used at Nike and recycled plastics, including those from factory floors. Reduced in granules and nicknamed Nike Grind, it is distinguished by its fragmented texture.
“We believe the future for product will be circular”, said Seana Hannah, Nike’s Vice President, Sustainable Innovation. If the collection represents a first step towards a carbon footprint below current Nike’s standards, it is also a call for responsibility for the company and its designers, who are identified as the drivers of change to reshape the supply chain and its expected results.