Reebok reveals a plant-based sneaker

by Stephen Garner

Reebok has revealed its first-ever plant-based shoe. Called the Forever Floatride Grow, the shoe builds on the brand’s successful Cotton + Corn lifestyle collection of footwear.

The new plant-based running shoe, which will launch in fall 2020, is an updated version of Reebok’s Forever Floatride Energy. Each component was researched and tested in order to identify the most sustainable natural ingredients that would meet the high-performance standards required for a best-in-class running shoe.

The most significant sustainability advancement is the shoe’s highly cushioned, responsive midsole, which is built from sustainably grown castor beans and maintains the high performance and lightweight cushioning standard of the original Forever Floatride Energy. The eucalyptus tree upper is naturally biodegradable, sustainably sourced, strong and breathable. The sockliner utilizes Bloom algae foam, which is harvested from invasive growth areas and is naturally odor-resistant. Finally, the flexible, durable and responsive natural rubber outsole is sustainably sourced from real rubber trees, rather than the petroleum-based rubber featured in other performance products.

“With Forever Floatride Grow, we’re replacing oil-based plastic with plants,” said Bill McInnis, vice president of Reebok Future. “The biggest challenge in making a shoe like this was developing plant-based materials that could meet the high-performance needs of runners. During the three years we spent developing this product, we heard loud and clear that the idea of a plant-based running shoe resonates strongly with serious runners. But those same runners felt just as emphatically that they would never compromise on performance. The Forever Floatride Grow is the result. Plant-based performance – with no compromise.”

“The earth is a runner’s arena, and we have a responsibility to help detox the world for the athletes who run in it,” added Matt O’Toole, Reebok brand president. “Our Cotton + Corn collection was the first step in making shoes from things that grow. Now, we have taken an award-winning running shoe, the Forever Floatride Energy, and reinvented it using natural materials to create what we feel is the most sustainable performance running shoe on the market.”

Reebok is focusing sustainability efforts under two pillars: [Ree]Grow, which focuses on the creation of products from natural materials; and [Ree]Cycled, which focuses on creating products using recycled or repurposed materials. Reebok is committed to reducing virgin polyester from its material mix and eliminating it altogether by 2025.

Forever Floatride Grow will be available for purchase in fall 2020. Consumers can sign up to learn more here. The Reebok NPC UK Cotton + Corn is available now.