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Social Responsibility - Materials

Social Responsibility

During the production process, we employ a wide variety of materials of both natural and synthetic origin. We strive to find materials which are long-lasting and which meet our high standards of quality. We integrate new materials into our collections once we have determined that their performance is consistent with our standards regarding quality, durability, and aesthetic.

Leading Partnerships
For more than four decades, we’ve looked to technology to help turn our ideas into reality, bridging the gap between design and performance and connecting the conceptual with the physical. Today, we find it more important than ever to align ourselves with brands and suppliers that share our values.

From a design perspective, we strive to offer new ideas which are wearable and long-lasting. Each season, we work with international industry leaders like GORE-TEX®, Michelin, and OrthoLite® to engineer footwear that is created with innovation and technology at its core, from first sketch to final product. Combined with our unrivaled passion for pushing design limits, the result is something we’re proud to stand behind. Because if four decades has taught us anything, it’s that a product is truly only as good as what it’s made of.

By insisting on high quality materials and functional design, we hope to create pieces which last for an extended period of time, making them sustainable in the truest sense of the word.

Testing
The quality and safety of our materials is an extremely important issue to us. We set high standards to ensure that suppliers are transparent and in strict accordance with our policy regarding chemicals and restricted substances.

We apply the highest level of restrictive standards for all markets in which we operate, prohibiting the use of materials that we find to be unfriendly to the environment. Our restricted chemicals list sets targets against a wide variety of chemicals such as chrome VI, formaldehyde, and heavy metals, making sure they never appear in our products. The policy is updated on an annual basis to ensure it incorporates the most accurate and up-to-date guidelines. 

To enforce this policy, we conduct random testing each season through approved third party laboratories to ensure that all standards are being met according to the EU REACH Regulation 1907/2006 guidelines.

Leathers

  • Our designers and materials' team work within a number of principles:
  • We are commited to using quality leathers that are only derived as a by-product of the meat industry.
  • We do not use hides originating from Brazil or which contribute to the deforestation of the Amazon Biome.
  • We do not use products made from real fur or skins from endangered/wild animals.

To better assess our environmental practices regarding materials, we joined the Leather Working Group (LGW) in 2013. This organization is a coalition of brands, suppliers, retailers, leading technical experts, and NGOs aimed at raising environmental standards and ensuring best practice standards for tanners, manufacturers, and retailers. Member tanneries are audited by specialists against stringent criteria and awarded gold, silver, or bronze status based on the environmental standards met at each location. In 2018, 87% of our leather was sourced from silver and gold rated tanneries.

Non-Leather
We are continuing to expand our selection of non-leather shoes made of synthetic and natural fibers. Within this, we are exploring innovative materials and production techniques to help us develop our new designs. Since 2018, our materials' team has been experimenting with new concepts which we we hope to incorporate into our main production lines in upcoming seasons.