Shloop Inc Brings Sustainability to Footwear with Algae-Based Shoes
Shloop, Inc. – The Shoe Loop – is investing $9 million to renovate a bakery into a footwear design studio. The catch? The shoes are made from algae.
Algae is the fastest growing plant on the planet. This can be a nuisance for people who own ponds and other common sources of algae. But Shloop is turning a nuisance into a sustainable option.
The company developed their own process to turn algae into BLOOM. Ryan Hunt, a Bloom founder, believed algae could be used to remove harmful nutrients, such as phosphorus and ammonia, from industrial and agricultural waste-water. This led to a process of extensive research, where the company discovered they could place protein-rich algae biomass under significant heat, pressure, and time to create a plasticization process. This discovery opened the door for even more innovation. They could clean the environment while simultaneously providing algae-based sustainable materials to the world.
Now, Shloop will use the BLOOM technology to produce sustainable footwear that won’t take up space in landfills or contribute to pollution. Their renovation will convert a 30,000 sq ft historic bakery in Mississippi into a footwear design studio and factory, employing 56 people. The shoes will also be able to be repaired or recycled providing a closed loop for shoes made by Shloop.
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