Portugese brand NAE Vegan Shoes has launched a new summer shoe collection called SS22. The sustainable shoes are made from apple leather, which uses upcycled waste from the Italian juice industry.
Thousands of tons of cores and peels are produced by the industry every year, sending a huge amount of waste to landfill and generating high management costs for companies. But these discards can be recovered and converted into a powder, which can be used as a substitute for oil derivatives such as PU to make a sustainable, durable, and waterproof vegan alternative to leather.
NAE’s new SS22 collection features sustainable sandals made from this apple-derived leather alternative, manufactured locally in Portugal to ensure fair conditions for workers. Previous shoes by NAE have used other natural and eco-friendly materials such as cork, organic cotton, and recycled ocean plastic.
Fruit-based vegan leather
Several brands are now using fruit-derived leather alternatives to make vegan fashion products — last year, Chinese manufacturer Veshin launched a range of accessories made with pineapple leather, including pillows and bags. Italian company Miomojo uses apple and cactus leather for its handbags, and even major brands such as Nike have developed shoes made with pineapple leather.
“Ultimately, the fashion and home decor industries have to change. This new [pineapple leather] innovation serves as a great example of how these industries can make changes without compromising on quality,” said Veshin founder Joey Pringle.