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March 4, 2008

What’s Orange and White and Green All Over?

Posted: 02:51 PM ET

This shoe may look orange and white but it’s really green all over! The shoe, dubbed the “Trash Talk,” is made out of manufacturing waste. The new concept was created in partnership with Steve Nash, the All-Star guard for the Phoenix Suns, who wore the shoe February 14th in a game against the Dallas Mavericks. KeJuan Wilkins, who works in Nike Media Relations, told me that Nash is really into the environment and when the Nike designers pitched Nash this idea he absolutely loved it.

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According to the Nike press release, the shoe’s upper is pieced together from leather and synthetic leather waste taken from the factory floor. The mid-sole uses scrap ground foam from factory production. The outsole uses environmentally-preferred rubber that reduces toxins and incorporates material from footwear-outsole manufacturing waste. The laces and sockliners use environmentally-preferred materials, and the shoes are packaged in a fully recycled cardboard box.

Nike says its environmentally-preferred rubber is made with new ingredients that contain 96% fewer toxins by weight than conventional rubber.

Don’t be fooled by the name - this shoe is anything but trash. If it’s good enough for a professional basketball player, it’s good enough for any pick-up game you can throw at it. Wilkins says Nike has received a lot of positive feedback about the shoe, especially from its environmentally-conscientious buyers.

With all this innovation Nike has set new goals for itself. The company says it has committed to designing all footwear to meet or exceed its Considered Design Standards by 2011.t Nike defines these standards as “challenging our designers to use environmentally preferred materials, reduce waste, create sustainable manufacturing processes and use innovation to help reduce overall environmental impact.”

The “Trash Talk” was released in limited numbers in New York and New Orleans. Wilkins told me the reason for the limited release is a lack of materials. The “Trash Talk” will be re-released for another limited run in April for Earth Day, in New York and possibly other locations. So even though this new shoe may help save the environment, it won’t save you any time trying to find it before your next game!

–Christy Pardue, Associate Producer, CNN Science & Technology

Filed under: environment • sports


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Brandon   March 6th, 2008 2:58 pm ET

Sustainable corporations also have a better bottom line. I think another focus could be on how little it costs to manufacture recycled materials. In any event, this was a great read.


KALU   March 6th, 2008 4:04 pm ET

I LIKETHIS WAY OF DOING BUSINES AND AT THE SAME TIME HELP THE EARTH WAY GO.


Jamal   March 6th, 2008 5:32 pm ET

Ballin. Nike just come up with a awesome idea to help save the environment. Cheya


Phillip Byers   March 6th, 2008 10:54 pm ET

They look like to poker faces two of kind


Lucy Stewart   April 1st, 2008 4:52 pm ET

Great article Christy! In today's age of "greener" and sustainability, having star power endorsement of a product creates that marketing buzz that every manufacturer dreams of...especially if you are Nike. Glad to hear that the manufacturer has found use for the waste created from their internal processing – very resourceful way to recycle smaller bits of perfectly good material. Congrats on the blog – keep 'em coming.


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