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Now Even Babies Can Wear Sustainable Shoes

Sustainability is coming for wearers big and small.

Stride Rite announced its latest eco-friendly sneakers made with renewable and recycled materials: Sprout and Fern.

Available in “little kids” sizes 3 through 10, the sneakers’ green design consists of a twill upper made of 30 percent seaweed fiber and 70 percent organic cotton, a recycled flexible and slip-resistant outsole made with 10 percent recycled rubberchrome-free suede that lessens pollution and creates cleaner waste streams (chrome-free suede is less toxic to leather workers and the environment) and recycled twill lining and hook-and-loop.

“We created the Stride Forward collection as an on-going commitment to incorporate as a many Earth-loving materials as possible into our designs, taking steps toward a beautiful world for generations to come,” said Samantha Berger, a designer for Stride Rite.

The Stride Forward collection launched last year with the Stride Rite 350 Aseel Sneaker, each pair crafted using materials from recycled plastic bottles. To date, more than 43,500 bottles have been recycled into Stride Rite product.

Making eco-friendlier children’s apparel and footwear is more than just a marketing play. Though kids outgrow clothes quickly, that’s all the more reason to resell them. And according to research done by e-commerce company Mercari, kids’ and baby item resale will more than double by 2030 and will account for 53.4 percent of the resale market by then, up from 39 percent in 2021—not taking into consideration that a lot of parents give away or hand-down their outgrown goods. 

Stride Rite’s commitment to creating a better world for the next generation also extends into packaging with FSC-certified sustainable sourcing, utilizing plant-based inks, eliminating toxic materials and limiting factory waste.

The sporty sneakers, offered in the blue colorway for Sprout and pink for Fern, are available now online and at select independently owned Stride Rite retail stores.