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Portuguese footwear invests in sustainability

Focused on the durability and quality of manufactured pieces, footwear companies invest in innovation and the selection of sustainable raw materials as a way of reinforcing their commitment to the environment.

The footwear sector stands out for its dynamism and the appreciation of its historical heritage, however, it has been transforming into a modern and future-oriented industry. It has developed a strategy of constant international promotion and is committed to building a collective image, recognized worldwide as a symbol of quality, design and innovation.

Several examples of footwear companies are 100% “MADE IN PORTUGAL”.

8000 Ricks is dedicated to manufacturing footwear made from the fibre of the cannabis plant and wool or the world’s first waterproof hemp shoes. Hemp is the most resistant natural fibre compared to other options. Furthermore, it consumes five times less water than cotton, does not require pesticides, is antibacterial and is a natural insulator, like cork, making it ideal for the manufacture of footwear.

Ambitious is a brand that is based on the values of quality and tradition, combined with innovation in industrial processes and techniques. It stands out for its ethical production and the use of local raw materials. Currently, it aims for 50% of its collection to be sustainable by 2025. To this end, it invests in recycled materials, ensuring that the entire manufacturing process is sustainable, through the use of water and energy-saving methods, and conscious packaging of the final product.

With more than 50 years of history, Arcopedico preserves a legacy that passes from generation to generation. Respect for the environment and nature, with all its resources, shapes and textures, is the brand’s driving force. In partnership with Texlimca, an expert in textile circularity, it has a footwear collection initiative: for each used pair delivered (from any brand), the customer receives an immediate 10% discount on the purchase of a new pair. In 2022, 2,705 pairs of shoes were collected.

Founded in 1963 by Joaquim José Heitor, JJ Heitor Shoes allocates almost all of its production to export. Whenever possible, the brand uses local suppliers, minimizing as much as possible the carbon footprint associated with the transport of raw materials, necessary for the production of sustainable footwear. The footwear stands out for its high quality and durability and is accompanied by maintenance instructions with the aim of extending the useful life of the piece.

Felmini is present in 35 countries and has more than 2,000 points of sale around the world. The brand chooses to use leather tanned with natural tannins, eliminating the use of heavy metals. It also focuses on the use of water-based glues, prefabricated rice husk soles (produced locally) and linings made from 50% organic cotton and 50% recycled polyester.

NOROMENTS was born in Santa Maria da Feira, one of the most renowned footwear production clusters in Portugal. The brand bases its operations on a philosophy of vegan and environmentally friendly products, in line with growing global concerns about sustainability. The contagious attitude of the new generations in defence of a more sustainable world and the awareness of defending ecology set the tone for the company to launch this new footwear concept.

Proposing an animal-friendly and ecological alternative to human exploitation is the mission of nae Vegan Shoes. The brand name is inspired by the acronym “NAE”, which means “No Animal Exploitation” (“No Animal Exploitation”, in Portuguese). The brand’s shoes and accessories are produced in Portugal in certified and ethical factories.

These and other companies can be consulted in the directory available on the link.

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