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PUMA has produced an experimental sneaker that is compostable.

Sports company PUMA says it has produced an experimental sneaker that is compostable under certain tailor-made industrial conditions following two years of research. The pilot project, known as the RE:SUEDE experiment, began in 2021 when PUMA created 500 pairs of the shoe, using Zeology-tanned suede, a TPE outsole and hemp fibres. 

The composting procedure begins by shredding and mixing the shoes with other green household waste and placing them into a composting tunnel. From there, PUMA says the equipment sprays leaching water from earlier composting that contains nutrients and is naturally heated due to the biological activity, and controlled air circulation in the tunnel.

PUMA says that after approximately 3 and a half months, the materials that were small enough (<10mm) to pass through a sieve were sold as Grade A compost for agricultural use (within the standards of the Netherlands), while the remaining materials were returned to the composting tunnel until they too had broken down to the desired level (<10mm).  

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