Companies that create fair trade products follow ethical production guidelines at every stage of their supply chain. Fairtrade certified brands pay their workers a livable wage, follow strict safety requirements to maintain a safe working environment, prevent child labor, and work to limit the environmental impact of their manufacturing process.
A sneaker is considered “fair trade” if it is produced following these specific criteria. These sustainable sneakers are also made using responsibly sourced materials including organic cotton, hemp, natural rubber, plant-based fibers or recycled material like polyester.
The purchase of these sustainable sneakers contribute to the development of ethical business practices, conscious consumption, and a shared value of eradicating poverty for farmers and workers around the world.
It also helps to end the exploitation of workers and give them a voice. Fair Trade puts premium-paying attention on the quality of the products, the conditions of their production along the supply chain, and the empowerment of workers.
By choosing to buy these products, you’re helping to create a more just and healthy world.
2022 List of Fair Trade Sneakers
Flamingos’ Life creates retro-style vegan sneakers in a variety of styles for men and women. The brand’s materials are eco-friendly and vegan-approved by PETA.
Good Guys is a vegan footwear and sustainable sneaker brand located in Paris, France, that designs vegan leather shoes for both men and women. Equitable labor practices are likewise a primary goal for the company. Good Guys manufactures its shoes in Europe in accordance with fair-trade workplace safety compliance regulations.
Saola is a vegan shoe brand whose main purpose is to keep trash out of landfills. They achieve this mission by reusing recycled knit and organic materials, as well as 3-4 recycled plastic bottles for each pair of sustainable shoes that they manufacture.
Kengos creates casual shoes made from 87% plant-based materials, including natural materials like eucalyptus fiber, corn, cork, cotton and natural rubber. Kengos sustainable sneakers are 100% vegan and are unique because they do not use any glue or synthetic dyes.
Based in Italy, Womsh creates uniquely designed and well-crafted vegan, sustainable sneakers. The company’s mission is to communicate sustainability and environmental stewardship to all those that wear their shoes. Womsh’s shoes are made from non-toxic raw materials. Despite the fact that the brand is not 100% vegan, it does have a large selection of cruelty-free products.
US-based Able crafts shoes for women, including sandals, heels, flats, sneakers, boots, and loafers. As a certified B corporation, ABLE is committed to long-term economic impact by hiring women craftsmen around the world.
New York-based Thousand Fell is a sustainable fashion company that sets themselves apart from the competition as maker of the world’s first recyclable vegan sneaker. Their shoes are created from recycled polyester and rubber from old yoga mats, as well as eco friendly materials like palm leaf fibers and coconut husks. The sneakers are designed in New York and manufactured in a family-owned business in Brazil. Once you’ve finished wearing them, the company will refurbish the used sneakers and donate them to someone in need.
CARIUMA is a sustainable and ethical shoe company based in Brazil that make their sneakers using natural materials like organic canvas, leather, and suede.
Etiko is a small family owned business based in Australia that specializes in 100% vegan, sustainable sneakers and fair trade shoes. Etiko sneakers are made out of natural latex rubber and organic cotton canvas, with no animal glues or hazardous dyes. Etiko has a sneaker recycling program as well. Send them your old sneakers to be transformed into a new pair of shoes.
Giesswein is an Austrian family business that has been in operation for three generations and is known for its wool sneakers. Over the years the company has expanded beyond wool and their shoes are now made from a variety of sustainable materials, including cactus vegan leather and ethically sourced wool. Their classic stan smith style white sneakers are some of our favorite.
Vegetarian Shoes, founded in the United Kingdom, creates vegan sneakers out of faux suede, nylon mesh, microfiber, and organic cotton. Their sneaker design is reminiscent of classic shoe styles, like old school Reebok, New Balance and Nike. The company operates factories in Portugal under fair trade labor conditions.
8000Kicks uses superior industrial hemp to make 100% waterproof shoes that are long-lasting and sturdy. Their vegan sneakers have one of the lowest CO2 footprints, meaning that they release significantly less pollution during their manufacturing process. They also partner with factories in China and Portugal, known for preeminent standards in hemp quality.
Headquartered in France with manufacturing based in Brazil, Veja sneakers are perfect for pairing with your favorite pair of jeans. Made from recycled plastic bottles, wild Amazonian natural rubber and other synthetic materials, Veja sneakers are stylish while also being environmentally friendly and socially responsible. Veja is a Certified B Corporation and uses natural materials like certified Fairtrade organic cotton.
EKN was founded on the belief that footwear should be made of high-quality, organic materials without the use of hazardous chemicals or dyes. This philosophy continues today. Recycled synthetic leather and neoprene are used for the exterior of the shoe, with recycled neoprene and mesh used to make replaceable insoles.
German footwear company Lunge creates an ergonomic, eco-friendly and handcrafted running shoe with a style that is distinctly unique and attention-getting. The majority of the company’s shoe materials are sourced and manufactured in Germany, where the company ensures that its supply chain and labor policies are sustainable and socially responsible.
Cog Footwear, based in France, is a sustainable footwear brand that manufactures vegan sneakers using 100% recycled materials, such as natural cork, discarded cotton scraps, rubber, and plastic bottles from the ocean.
Eco-friendly fashion label Ecoalf creates lightweight ethical sneakers made from recycled plastic bottles and sustainable Sonora fibers. By repurposing waste material like fishing nets, old tires, and even coffee grounds to create new, high-quality textiles, Ecoalf is able to produce high-quality, durable goods.
LOCI is a vegan sustainable sneaker brand located in the United Kingdom that is dedicated to environmental sustainability. Their shoes are designed for optimal comfort and are handcrafted in Portugal under Fair Trade labor rules.
Ella & Witt is an innovative German ethical shoe brand that creates 100% vegan and PETA certified sneakers, boots, and more. Their shoes are produced from sustainable materials such as corn leather and recycled plastic bottles.
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