Rens Launches First-Ever 'Coffee Sneaker' Made From Coffee And Recycled Plastic
Rens, a Helsinki-based footwear company has created a waterproof sneaker made from recycled plastic bottles and coffee waste.
The company utilises used coffee grounds in attempt to lessen the environmental impact as they emit as much methane as 10million cars every year.
"When we started, we actually realised that only five per cent of the coffee waste in the world actually gets recycled," says Rens co-founder and CEO, Jesse Tran.
"Coffee waste is a bio waste, but it produces a lot of methane, which is like 32 times more potent than CO2. So what we do here is just extend the life cycle."
"After you drink the coffee and throw the coffee grounds away, we actually mix it with recycled plastic pellets made from used water bottles," explains Tran. "We then create something called coffee polyester yarn. The majority of the upper part of our shoes is made from this material."
The brand initially came up with the product idea in July 2017, and unveiled a KickStarter campaign that raised over €486,000 in 2 months. A second campaign in August 2021 raised an additional €300,000 – which enabled the company to launch a second-generation version of the product called ‘Nomad’.
“In the market, sustainable products are really popular. What we see as a problem is that those products are not made for young people," says co-founder and CTO Son Chu.
"The way that they are selling the products is like: 'Hey, use us or else the planet is going to die.' We don't like that approach. We want to be a brand where we make sustainable products, but they are cool, they have really cool functions, people can actually use them."
The company aims to create a completely climate neutral product so the company offsets all emissions from the production, packaging and distribution stages of its product.
"Whatever product we make, we will apply the same formula, which is from waste-based material,” says Tran. “It can be coffee waste again, or it can be something else.”
Holly Moon, Content Manager