Adidas unveils biodegradable shoe made of artificial spider silk

Adidas unveiled its latest concept shoe at the Biofabricate conference in New York earlier this month: a 100% biodegradable performance shoe made from artificial spider silk.

Adidas’ latest performance shoe is a technological and sustainable wonder. The Futurecraft Biofabric features an upper made from 100% Biosteel fibres, a nature-based and completely biodegradable high performance fibre developed by the German biotech company AMSilk.

Derived from the same proteins that spiders use to make their tough-but-pliable webbing, the material is 15% lighter in weight than conventional synthetic fibres and is the “strongest fully natural material available”, according to Adidas.

As ecouterre reports, the bio-based textile has other advantages for eco-conscious sports enthusiasts: not only does it provide moisture management, breathability and protection against bacterial growth, it’s also completely vegan.

The Futurecraft Biofabric shoe is just the latest Adidas product to push the boundaries of sneaker innovation. Over the past 1.5 years, the global sports brand has unveiled 3D-printed shoes, shoes made by robots and even shoes made out of recycled ocean plastic, which it makes in collaboration with Parley for the Oceans (as we reported on here).

“In a year of ground-breaking innovations from Adidas, the announcement of our partnership with AMSilk – and the unveiling of the adidas Futurecraft Biofabric shoe – is another step in our commitment to redefining the sport industry,” said James Carnes, vice president of strategy creation at Adidas, in a statement.

Thanks to the Biosteel fibres, which are 100% biodegradable in a fully natural process, the latest concept shoe is by far the company’s most sustainable.

“This concept represents premium innovation,” Carnes said. “By using Biosteel® fibres in our products, we achieved an unrivalled level of sustainability. We are moving beyond closed loop and into an infinite loop – or even no loop at all. This is a pioneering stride forward beyond sustainability into a new territory of bionic innovation.”


Image credit: © Adidas

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