Sustainable footwear brand Vivobarefoot gets B Corp status
London-based shoe brand Vivobarefoot has joined the likes of Veja, Allbirds and Toms in achieving B Corp status, a sustainability certification.
Having B Corp status guarantees that the business is adhering to the highest standards of social, fiscal and environmental accountability.
Vivobarefoot, which has recently launched the world’s first footwear re-commerce site, said the certification will be used to drive change in the way shoe businesses operate.
Co-founder and CEO Galahad Clark said: “Our industry is full of corporate greenwashing and needs to be radically redefined. Footwear brands across the world are too focused on unrealistic profit lines and doing what they think is as little harm as possible at the same time. We believe there is a better way to operate a business.
“Making more ‘sustainable’ shoes out of more ‘sustainable’ materials to minimise negative impact isn’t going to cut it, especially when so many of these shoes have no end-of-life purpose and will end up in landfill.
“That’s why our starting point isn’t shoemaking at all: It is bare-foot-wear; scientifically proven to regenerate and restore our physical health and our constant development of new manufacturing processes and materials, we believe, can help us become regenerative, not sustainable.”
Revivo, the brand’s re-commerce site, allows returned shoes to be reconditioned and brought back to market at a lower price point. Additionally, the company will be launching 3D shoe-printing in 2021 which will power a made-to-order service that reduces waste and tackles the issue of excess inventory.
Vivobarefoot said the certification also highlights its work in Ethiopia, where it’s working with a social enterprise factory to create shoes for its Soul of Africa range. Workers in the factory are paid a fair wage and offered the opportunity to learn new skills.
The brand’s shoes, which retail for about £150, are produced using recycled plastic bottles, bio-based materials and leather sourced from small-scale independent farmers in Africa.
The business was founded by Clark, a sixth-generation descendant of the Clarks footwear family dynasty, in 2012 and had sales of £26.2 million last year.
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