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A big problem with shoes is apparently the unused.
An organization called TreadLightly has been conducting an investigation.
This study found that the average Australian owns around five pairs of shoes that they don’t wear.
That’s 100 million pairs of unused shoes in our closets, folks.
A quarter of those questioned hold on to their old shoes “for a rainy day or for sentimental reasons”.
Half of the respondents admitted to throwing unwanted shoes in the trash.
TreadLightly – a new industry-led national recycling initiative run by the Australian Sporting Goods Association and Save Our Soles – is addressing this issue.
It takes unused sports and active lifestyle shoes and recycles them into mats and flooring for retail stores, gyms and playgrounds.
“This study shows how many shoes get dusty at home and how many shoes end up in the trash because we don’t know what else to do with them,” said Shaun Bajada, executive director of the Australian Sporting Goods Association.
Bajada said it was a national problem of “significant environmental pollution” as shoe components take more than 1,000 years to break down.
“TreadLightly exists to solve a very real industry problem. We are committed to working closely with retailers, manufacturers and consumers to reduce the industry’s environmental footprint and prevent millions of shoes from ending up in landfills every year.”
More than 110 million shoes are imported into Australia every year, including 25 million sporty and sporty lifestyle shoes.
TreadLightly is calling on Australians to meet their goal of recycling more than a million pairs of shoes by 2023.
“All you have to do is look around your home for any unwanted athletic or active lifestyle shoes – from trainers and trainers to golf shoes – and take them to one of our 400+ participating retailers for sale at the Opening up your state to recycle. “
Women are more likely to keep shoes they don’t wear and keep an average of seven pairs – while men keep about three pairs.
And more than half of women buy shoes every six months or more, with most owning an average of 11 pairs.
TreadLightly works with greats like Adidas, The Athletes Foot, Nike, New Balance, Platypus, Hush Puppies, SportsPower and Rebel Sport. We are happy to hear that because companies need to be responsible for the waste they generate in a fair circular economy.
So … if the shoe fits, wear it.
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