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Allbirds Heads Into Apparel With Eco-Friendly Socks

Allbirds is dipping a wing into non-shoe products.

The California-based startup, whose merino and Tencel sneakers have generated almost cult-like devotion among its fans, debuted Tuesday a line of socks designed to “pair perfectly” with its lace-ups and slip-ons.

Manufactured in North Carolina from Trino, a proprietary blend of New Zealand wool and eucalyptus fiber, the socks come in three styles: a $12 no-show “hider,” a $14 ankle-length “quarter” and a $16 classic-crew “tuber.” They’re available in six colors, with names like “waterfall,” “flamingo” and “onyx.”

“Combining the best of Tree + Merino, our knit is a softer, cooler, and more breathable super-yarn that’s comfortable all day and into the night,” Allbirds explained on its website. The pique-knit socks, which feature reinforced heels and toes, are soft, flexible, moisture wicking, odor resistant and “cool off as you get warmer,” the company noted.

With its low carbon footprint and responsibly harvested materials, Trino “treads lighter on the environment than typical synthetics,” Allbirds said. “We made sure our high-quality knit was sustainably sourced from top to toe.”

The brand has expressed a desire to minimize its environmental impact, even going so far as to introduce a “carbon tax” in a bid to offset 100 percent of its emissions. “It’s almost like we’re giving the planet an IOU, then immediately paying it back,” the company said of the Allbirds Carbon Fund, which will invest in eco-friendly initiatives such as planting trees, building solar and wind facilities and recapturing methane from landfill and livestock operations.

And socks may just be the beginning for the Silicon Valley darling, which was recently valued at $1.4 billion.

“Allbirds has never been just about wool or just about footwear,” co-founder Tim Brown told CNBC. “Socks are a start.”

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