Many sustainable fashion brands are now using leather alternatives made from materials like apple, pineapple, corn, cactus, or grape. But French shoe brand MoEa is taking things a step further by using all five!
The cactus and corn leathers are derived from the discarded skins of these plants, while the pineapple leather comes from leaves. The apple and grape varieties are both made with juice industry waste. These recycled plant materials are combined with either organic cotton, bio-PU, or recycled plastic, depending on the type of plant.
MoEa’s shoes are available in five different colours, with each one corresponding to a different type of plant-based leather. For each type, customers can choose between a solid colour or a white shoe with accents.
It’s not just the uppers of the shoes that are eco-friendly — the lining is made from 70% recycled bamboo, the soles from 40% recycled rubber, and the insoles from recycled wood fibres. The shoes are designed to be long-lasting and can be recycled when they wear out. They are also PETA-approved, and handmade in Portugal to ensure ethical labour standards.
Last year, a report found that the vegan footwear market was thriving, with its value estimated at $24.86 billion. Another report earlier this year predicted a strong growth rate of 6.2% for the sustainable footwear market through to 2026.
“We all love sneakers. They’re comfortable to wear and usable for a variety of different occasions. Unfortunately, they are also contributing negatively to the planet,” says Achille Gazagnes, founder and CEO of MoEa. “Standard sneakers are made with leather or plastic, materials which are both highly polluting and cruel to animals. That’s why we’ve launched MoEa — to create sneakers that offer the same level of style and comfort you’d expect to see in your favourite leather pair, whilst ensuring that the planet isn’t some sort of a meaningless afterthought and that animals aren’t treated with cruelty.”