ESG Case Study- Nike vs. Adidas

ESG Case Study- Nike vs. Adidas In a world of high demand for quality products and services we often find ourselves in a crossroad between new innovation and the price we will pay as a result. Not necessarily a monetary cost; often times avoided, we tend to overlook or chose not to calculate in the ESG criteria regarding investments.

Throughout history we have seen that humans will continue to grow and extend horizons for what we perceive to be possible and impossible. In 1492 we discovered that there was an entire continent we never knew existed. Dating back to 1879 we invented the lightbulb which revolutionized life as we know it extending our days into nights. We’ve landed on the moon; outgrown slavery, and seen our own first president of minority come into office to serve two terms. With targets to preserve our own human bodies, we have made developments of artificial intelligence allowing us to prototype new organs and substitutes to help us outlive set life expectancies. As we conduct all these breakthroughs and continue to make headway towards creating an increasingly more efficient lifestyle; we have lost touch with the one thing that merges all these factors together, our very own planet Earth.

Today our atmosphere unquestionably contains more than 400 ppm (parts per million) of carbon dioxide on average, higher than any point within the last 800,000 years. To more clearly understand this number, comparing against the pre-industrial figure of 280 ppm it is on pace to hit levels of 500 ppm within the next 50 years causing temperature boost estimates of 5.4 °F. Although this impacted temperature difference may only seem to be a small decision of whether or not to wear a sweater on an early spring day, its global warming impact on our planet’s ecosystem is significantly greater than just that. As defined by the Natural Resources Defense Council, “Global warming occurs when carbon dioxide (CO2) and other air pollutantsand greenhouse gases collect in the atmosphere and absorb sunlight and solar radiation that have bounced off the earth’s surface. Normally, this radiation would escape into space—but these pollutants, which can last for years to centuries in the atmosphere, trap the heat and cause the planet to get hotter. That’s what’s known as the greenhouse effect.”

This impact alters the earth’s climate system including but not limited to our air and water sources, thus increasing our exposure for more frequent and severe weather. In only the past few years we have seen some of the deadliest storms and wildfires. In fact, for the years between 2011 and 2015 the annual average cost of losses from disasters came in at $10.8 billion which was double that of the range from 1980 to 2015 which totaled only $5.2 billion. Statistical figures can be re-arranged to expose different effects; however, regardless of how you see it, it would be foolish to believe that we are not harming and ruining our own home at an alarming rate unlike any other we have witnessed in the past.

Keeping these notions prevalent we must be cognoscente of the impact our everyday decisions have towards these larger picture events. From a consumer standpoint these decisions can be more easily understood. Not buying from companies that have child labor practices, avoiding the use of goods that may be harmfully tested on different animals such as makeup products; are all decisions we as consumers make on a daily basis without necessarily thinking about them. The impacts of what the consumer wants and the standards of which they hold these companies to, can be translated to what in the long term will ideally be brought up and addressed at executive meetings to inspire more efficient sustainable solutions. We must account for the resources required to produce, given the differences specific products or services may require. Certain industries require more resources, such as gold. Gold is a very finite non-renewable resource which can explain as to why the prices at a jewelry store are valued the way they are. For gold, the process requires a lot of time and effort dedicated to extracting and pulling it out of the ground before it can be sent off to the next stage of development. This first step requires a lot of machinery use such as crushers to dig into the ground in tandem with excavators and dump trucks. It does not take a scientist to realize and understand that there is a significant amount of gas burned throughout this process alone. The emissions produced from this first step are only a fraction of what pollutes the atmosphere to create one shiny ring we find in a mall storefront. As gold is a non-renewable resource once the product is produced, there are few options for the use of its remaining life. Other consumer goods may allow for the use of their materials and contributors to be recycled and reused more efficiently or in some cases more favorably, substituted by other materials

Illustrated by Britannica, “a consumer good, in economics, is any tangible commodity produced and subsequently purchased to satisfy the current wants and perceived needs of the buyer.” A consumer good staple that has been around since the beginning of man-kind and is more than likely expected to stay present are clothes. The demand for clothes will likely never diminish and we can always expect to discover all kinds of new designs and accommodations made for different situational needs. Two of the world’s most influential apparel and footwear brands are Nike and Adidas both of which serve a deeper meaning than just producing clothes for us to wear. Basing most of their products around sports, they influence a vast range of facets; whether it is on a professional level sponsoring certain athletes or leagues, or on the most elementary level of creating new settings for the youth to begin their first steps into the realm of sports. They serve beyond the apparel they produce; they create stimulation in economies around the world as a result of their size and reachability to the everyday world through features such as their supply chain. They begin to divest from being just an apparel company to becoming a trend setter not only in their designs but more importantly in their practices and standards to exemplify a higher level of sustainability. The aspect of sustainability is not limited to a safer cleaner world in which we all coexist in, but also expands into the health of our economy and the people in it. Having factories on different continents they conceive jobs that once never existed. This stimulation creates a demand for evolution through higher education of people everywhere to continuously create and supply new consumers. Neither Adidas nor Nike would have been able to achieve their respective magnitudes of success had they not made decisions and investments to sustain their obligations. However, today we begin to raise the bar for those obligations as a result of the deterioration of our planet and the resources we first handedly witness are becoming more and more scarce.

As our innovations have continuously grown, likewise, we have seen the increase of devastations that come directly with it. To keep these matters balanced out we have created resources to hold each of these innovators to a standard in which they are forced to find a harmony between new growth without making many sacrifices. To measure this balance, we revert to the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board which was founded in 2011 to help businesses around the world identify, manage, and report on the sustainability topics that matter most or are most material to their various stakeholders. Note, a stakeholder can be an everyday person that is a consumer of the good, an employee, the local community, the environment, the supply chain, as well as all shareholders. This board has now allowed us to uncover certain features to the companies of the clothes and shoes we wear every day. Staying focused on the industry of consumer goods there are three main dimensions we must focus on in consideration of the issues these companies face; Product Quality & Safety, Supply Chain Management, and Materials Sourcing & Efficiency. For the purpose of this report we will focus on these primary concerns digging into their logistics and how these two brands rank against each other.

To begin we must address each of these dimensions deeper to understand how they function individually and eventually work in unison to innovate and sustain any headwinds.

Firstly “Product Quality & Safety” as defined by SASB, –“addresses issues involving unintended characteristics of products sold or services provided that may create health or safety risks to end-users. It addresses a company’s ability to offer manufactured products and/or services that meet customer expectations with respect to their health and safety characteristics. It includes, but is not limited to, issues involving liability, management of recalls and market withdrawals, product testing, and chemical/content/ingredient management in products”.

Next is “Supply Chain Management” defined, –“addressing management of environmental, social, and governance (ESG) risks within company’s supply chain. Addresses issues associated with environmental and social externalities created by suppliers through their operational activities. Such issues include, but are not limited to, environmental responsibility, human rights, labor practices, and ethics and corruption”.

Finally, we have “Materials Sourcing & Efficiency” defined as, –“addressing issues related to the resilience of materials of supply chains to impacts of climate change and other external environmental and social factors. It captures the impacts of such external factors on operational activity of suppliers, which can further affect availability and pricing of key resources. It addresses a company’s ability to manage these risks through product design, manufacturing, and end-of-life management, such as by using of recycled and renewable materials, reducing the use of key materials (dematerialization), maximizing resource efficiency in manufacturing, and making Research & Development investments in substitute materials.”

Now that the sustainability model is clearer, we can submerge into how each of these entities compare against the other. Although conceived 15 years prior, adidas has seen its competitor Nike outpace them in terms of sales and now has a valuation almost twice as large. This figure allows investors to broadly see the overall image of both phenomena’s however in today’s day and age we are beginning to see a desire for more than just numbers; for as stated earlier, we are digging ourselves into an unforgiving position in terms of our planet.

Focusing on our first dimension, Product Quality and Safety, we can begin to analyze Nike as it was recently addressed with a lot of criticism when projected #1 NBA draft pick Zion Williamson, ripped through his shoe during a nationally televised game between Duke University and rival North Carolina. While making a lateral cut to shake off an opposing defender, Mr. Williamson’s shoe appeared to rip through the side of the shoe where the seam meets the sole. Although there was no long term sustained injury to the player this raised many questions towards the quality and safety of Nike’s products more specifically in this case their shoes. The reason many people are lured towards Nike’s shoes are because it is what they see their favorite professional athletes wearing; their role models, icons, etc. So from an everyday consumer perspective, they believe that if the product is good enough to be used by people like Mr. Williamson at the highest and most professional level, it will surely serve their more common everyday purposes with satisfaction. Having faced a similar event regarding their product safety in the past, Nike was forced to recall roughly 350,000 pairs of men’s “Air Face Up” shoes. Over 35 reports came out from individuals having a rivet rip through the sole of the shoe causing basketball players to receive cuts to their legs, two reports specifying that players required stitching as a result.

Although these events happened and exposed certain flaws within their products it is not a direct representation of their brand as a whole. Being the leader of sportswear, they hold a high position for satisfaction within their customer base. In an initiative to improve their product quality they have created a Nike+ website where runners can upload data about themselves and serves as an engaging platform. One of its important functions is to allow users to provide feedback and new desires within upcoming products. They are able to explain how they may want to see more durability within the sneaker to accommodate more needs of a daily runner.

Having a more direct line of dialogue with their customers’ requests has allowed them to discover that they are not limited to only include performance related improvements but also entails environmental improvements to appeal to the customer. In efforts to decrease water consumption levels, Nike introduced what they describe as a manufacturing revolution of a water free dying process. Using high-tech equipment at their Taiwanese manufacturer they have replaced previously used water with recyclable C02, reducing energy use and eliminating the need for added chemicals in the process. An efficiency of approximately 60% is achieved and also reduces the process time by 40%, in tandem, these two impacts will reduce a factories footprint by a quarter. Once adapted in more of their factories this will have potential to increase sustainability significantly.

Continuing now to adidas, they too have had recalls in their past. The production of a kids’“Intinitex” swimwear line was pulled off shelves after reports were released of one of the stripes coming off in contact with water. Although there were no injuries reported from the result of this happening, it posed a choking hazard to the children wearing the gear. In addition, it was taken under consideration that the stripe may get caught on various items creating a threat to children’s safety. Furthermore, in an unfortunate misunderstanding over the release of the Ultra boost shoe in February which celebrates Black History, adidas decided to recall the honorary shoe as it was taken as misleading and misrepresenting of its intention. The all white shoe inspired by the Harlem Renaissance received a lot of backlash on social media resulting in a withdrawal in totality. It was eventually released however this hiccup did not serve well of its intended purpose. Even though this specific shoe has done well for the company as a whole, its execution was not appreciated by many of its customers. Even as the product itself may be a quality shoe, its perception was sub-par and for that reason resulted in a lower than expected rating of the public.

Quality is not always so cut and dry but rather instead absorbed more so as the quality of appeal by its purchaser or in this case lack thereof. In summary, both matters were not favorable ones and have hopefully established lessons in which both companies will be able to get back on track from and continue grow positively.

As for Adidas, they have clearly stated that they refuse and prohibit the use of leather from animals that have been inhumanely treated regardless of where they came from. Their zero tolerance policies for animal testing in line with their bi-annual updating of materials list helps them make strides in the right direction of product appeal. In an effort to save water where necessary they have initiated the “Manufacturing Excellence” program with a target to achieve 50% water savings at apparel material suppliers by 2020. One of their newest innovations paralleling to Nike’s ‘ColorDry’ technology, includes the ‘Right First Time’procedure. As textile production requires high amounts of water, a single failure can double and even on occasion triple the amount of water used for correction. This process ensures that each product will be produced correctly the first time eliminating any potential for extra water usage. As a result, adidas has for the second year in a row received recognition as number one out of 198 companies evaluated in the Corporate Information Transparency Index. Created by the Institute of Public & Environmental Affairs it rates the performance of environmental impacts of manufacturing operations in China. The outcome supports adidas’ desire to becoming a greener energy orientated business. Created in 2012 their “GreenENERGY” fund has received $1.5-$2 million annually in onsite energy efficiency and renewable energy projects which has proven to be beneficial. The sustainability of both company’s products quality will continue to be viewed as top shelf as they each respectively hold unique partnerships surrounding athletes.

The second dimension of which we will analyze the two companies will be their Supply Chain Management. Once again beginning with Nike, they have set several goals in 2015 set to mature in 2020. Nike has faced scrutiny in the past and even more recently for sweatshop like conditions. In the late 1990’s while conducting an inspection report, accounting firm Ernest and Young exposed the brand for having many unsafe conditions at one of the shoe’s largest manufacturing plants in Vietnam. Amongst the allegations were cases of exposure to carcinogens such as toluene that exceeded local standards by as much as 177 times the standard which were already set at more strict levels than that of the United States. Toluene has been known to cause damage to the liver, kidneys and central nervous system. This raised many questions as five months prior, its civil rights advocate former United Nations representative, Andrew Young, stated in a newspaper ad that the company was doing well in terms of worker treatment. Quite contradictorily to what was of actuality, this questioned Nike’s integrity and character strongly, especially given they earned approximately $800 million on sales of on $9.2 billion the year prior. Although the company did take action to improve on their callouts by reducing hours worked weekly from 65 to 45 as well as installing more fans to manage employee environments better; a reporter who revisited the factory claimed that many standards were still not being met such as the wearing of protective gear and the pay still remained low.

Notorious for their lack of transparency about its pay to factory workers they were recently once again protested against in 2017. This time by the Workers Rights Consortium which is composed of universities, international labor rights experts, and student groups the protests surrounding the esurance of college logos being made under conditions that respected workers’ rights. As their sustainability report states that they plan to promote fairer labor practices; many of their international wages still remain below the level of a living wage in the respective countries in which many factories are held. Nike’s explanation for this is that their factories are subcontracted and restrict their ability to accommodate those crucial gaps. The brand begins to address more of these cultural issues exemplified in the famous recently created ad featuring Colin Kaepernick, framing the slogan, “Believe in something, even if it means sacrificing everything.” Nonetheless, a very ironic quote coming from a company that had been known for sweatshop labor.

In similar fashion we will now look at Adidas’ Supply Chain Management as they too have set ambitious goals to mature in 2020. Adidas’ similarly to Nike is no stranger to human rights and labor practice issues in its past. Facing the same issues as their rival, Adidas’employees are often faced with expected overtime hours and low wages. This effort of sponsoring worldwide events, has caused workers in places such as Indonesia to be paid as little as 34 Rupiah which can equate to less than $60 a month. However, as these issues came up to the surface, the difference in the two companies was that Adidas’ began taking somewhat more meaningful strides towards overcoming these commonly seen obstacles. Copies of laborer’s identity cards are now held at the Nikomas factory where adidas produces many of its footwear products thus cutting out any under 18 year old workers from employment. While conducting internal audits, workplaces are evaluated by Social Compliance Ratings which decreased in 2016. Ratings are presented by a grade from 1C to 5C (5C being best and 1C at a risk for termination). Since 2013, 67% of suppliers held a rating of 3C or better translating to a percentage score of 60-79% compliance with the standards set. Suppliers with threshold issues which are considered correctable non-compliance issues are given 3 months to remediate the issues before being re-audited for final SEA (Social Environmental Affairs) acceptance. After accepting responsibility for their previous mistakes and improving worker pay from the low 34p up to 75p per day they have started to conduct themselves in a more humane matter.

They have begun using new technologies where workers can unanimously file complaints or concerns regarding their respective work space. As for creating a legitimate change, Adidas has joined the German campaign called “Wir Zusammen” translating to “Us Together”. This platform was brought on to increase work integration coordinatingly increasing the involvement of refugees in Germany. In 2016 Adidas employed 30 short-term interns which exceeded a target set by 10%. Included in them were human resource specialists, graphic designers, as well as IT and sales assistants. A plan set to increase the number of these positions is in line with the notion to provide entrance qualifications to become full time workers. Fair Labor Association president Sharon Waxman addressed this new initiative saying, “The FLA applauds Adidas’ work in Turkey to help Syrian refugees find decent work and to improve working conditions for local and displaced workers alike. Adidas was an early and active supporter of our advocacy efforts with the Turkish Government to guarantee legal work permits for refugees and has demonstrated a strong commitment under enormously challenging circumstances. We are grateful for their leadership on this issue.” Although the German brand still has work to do surrounding the treatment of factory workers, it has made significant steps in a direction to achieve higher sustainability.

Finally, we will analyze the third and final dimension of this report for each company, Materials Sourcing & Efficiency. Nike has set goals to achieve a 10% decrease in their carbon footprint and while the first two years put them on track, they are currently standing at 7.45 kg CO2 which represents a 2% unfavorable decrease from the baseline of 7.33. Overall sustainability performance stands with a grade of 73% which has practically tripled from 2015 baseline score of 27% with an intended goal of achieving 80%. This grade can be justified from the result of their Flyknit innovation which will be discussed later.

Renewable energy has seen a favorable 5% increase which was sprouted from agreements signed to source roughly 460,000 MWh/year of wind energy, delivering more than one-half of their global commitment. Already functioning off 100% renewable energy, the European logistics center held in Laakdal, Belgium sources its energy through this practice (in addition to solar, geothermal, and locally produced biomass and hydro), allowing for new approaches for energy storage. The success of the ELC has allowed for new development and understanding to be translated into practice in the Asia Pacific geographies. Currently at least 30% of the China Logistics center sources its energy through rooftop solar panels. The slower development stems from rapidly evolving conditions and regulatory environments although the company has expressed that they plan to work with regulators and mutually come to agreement.

The implementation of onsite rooftop solar photovoltaic projects by supply partners has been accelerating and is a top priority as it is widely available in addition to having less restrictions and policies against them. As all of these factors have been continuously worked and improved upon, Nike still faces one of its biggest hurdles in reducing their carbon emissions which involves its shipping logistics. The air freight is 25 times more carbon intensive than the alternative ocean freight. Beginning in 2017 the company was able to reduce this figure as they
implemented and expanded new modes of transportation to include part air, part ocean freight resulting in faster than all ocean shipping and less carbon intensive than all air transport. Operating in 42 countries, employing more than one million workers, Nike’s products are manufactured at over 500 different contract factories.

Although no direct target for the 2020 goals was set however this company has been able to successfully increase the sustainability of their apparel and footwear products favorably by 11% and 2% respectively. The target to deliver products with a 10% reduction in the average environmental footprint per unit is one of Nike’s main current focus. One of the most successful operations has been the accredited to the Flyknit shoe development which reduces waste by 60%. The “Free RN Flyknit” and “Air Vapormax Flyknit” contribute positively, saving greenhouse gas emissions to what is equated to a car driving almost 15 miles. Much of this new development has contributed to a 2.5% decrease in the average carbon footprint relative to its baseline.

In tandem with this new breakthrough they have begun focusing on using more recycled materials, more specifically polyester which is used in many of their apparel products. The yarns used for these Flyknit shoes come from 100% recycled polyester as well featuring a midsole which is made from another low-waste technology produced by pellets being injected into the mold. The fiscal year of 2017 alone has transformed 4.6 billion plastic bottles into the recycled polyester just mentioned. As much as 98% of footwear products use environmentally preferred rubber while compared to just 3% being used in 2004; additionally, they have reused rubber outsole scraps to be recycled for future soles. This new innovation has been sufficient for them to reach their 2020 product target however their apparel stands behind schedule for this maturity.

For the fourth straight year in a row the Textile Exchange’s “Preferred Fiber & Materials Market Report” Nike has been recognized as the best in using recycled polyester. As cotton accounts for more than half of their water usage footprint, 2017 proved to be a year where they would source 73% of their cotton more sustainably, decreasing their water impact of water by 24 billion liters. Results of these innovations are visibly noticeable; the factory waste has decreased by an overall of 2 million pounds and the post-consumer waste has almost tripled in savings through their ability to re-use a shoe from a 500,000 figure in 2016 to a little under 1.4 million pounds in 2017. The company aligns this savings with a higher likelihood to be able to improve labor conditions in its near future, which as we learned is a hurdle they have been trying to overcome for decades.

Now taking into account Adidas’ Material Sourcing & Efficiency, we will uncover how they have made more revolutionizing alternatives for the creation of their products. As they have now been functioning off their new “Right First Time” technology, since 2014 they have reduced the amount of water in the materials process from 121 liters/kg down to 95 liters/kg which is a favorable 22% decline. As they are motivating their footwear suppliers to continue this trend it is vital that these factories are able to attain the highly set goals by Adidas as these factories find themselves located in more water critical regions of the globe.

Proportionally higher goals are necessarily set as these locations are already in distress. Note, just as Nike has started using its “ColorDry” technology process, Adidas has continued work in defining the logistics of what will be called “DryDrye” to significantly decrease these water consumptions. Partnering with SOS Children’s Villages, Adidas has teamed up on water projects in places such as Aleppo, Syria to establish more sustainability. The impact was incredible, creating access to water on a daily basis for 700 families in these scarce environments. Furthermore, they were able to connect a borehole through fixed pipes and public water taps to provide water to buildings in the surrounding area. Through donation of a water pump and ten metal containers in the center of Aleppo they can now provide as many as 35,000 people with necessary water. The success of the inaugurator year of 2016 of the ‘Manufacturing Excellence’ has contributed to 11% savings in water usage which exceeded the annual goals set.

Although their water usage efficiency is still in the works; Adidas has reinvented the way they source materials for sneakers. What is a major milestone for their track record, Adidas has addressed their concern for the marine environment which is the most fragile ecosystem as it will sustain some of the greatest impacts of the potential 5.4 °F increase to our globe mentioned at the beginning of this report.

An unfortunate reality is that the Pacific Ocean has been for quite some time been referenced as an oceanic dump as a result of all the plastic that has funneled into it. Every minute of every day there is one truckload of plastic that crawls its way into our oceans, contributing to a total of over 5 trillion pieces of plastic litter. If the world does not put an end to this it is expected that by 2050 there will be a higher volume of plastic in the ocean than actual fish. The deterioration will not need all that much more time before we lose one of our most valuable food supplies as humans.

One of Adidas’ latest and greatest achievements was the partnership established with Parley the Ocean, a company that addresses major threats towards our oceans and the waste found within it. As we will learn about, this partnership will not only be beneficial to Adidas from a reusability standpoint but also will be creating a longer lasting impact on the world’s ecosystem; more specifically on marine life which as described by Parley will see the end of most sea life within the next 6-16 years. In 2015, the two companies teamed up to make a sneaker that was made entirely of yarn recycled from ocean waste and illegal deep-sea gill nets. Together Adidas and Parley for the Oceans sold over 1 million pairs of “Ultraboosts” sneakers made from ocean waste in 2017.

To reconsider the definition of Material Sourcing & Efficiency as per the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board, “It addresses a company’s ability to manage risks through product design, manufacturing, and end-of-life management, such as by using of recycled and renewable materials, reducing the use of key materials (dematerialization), maximizing resource efficiency in manufacturing, and making Research & Development investments in substitute materials.”

And now their goals for the future are set even higher with what’s called the Parley A.I.R. Strategy — an acronym for “avoid, intercept, and redesign.”

Avoid: In 2017, saving approximately 70 million plastic bags by switching to paper bags in retails stores. While plastic is still very much part of the products Adidas makes, it is making efforts to eliminate virgin plastic from its supply chain.

Intercept: Instead of sourcing materials that have already polluted the ocean, Parley and Adidas expanded their collection process to include plastic waste found in coastal communities and on beach fronts.

Redesign: Innovation is a huge part of footwear and sportswear design, but performance isn’t the only area of improvement Adidas is focusing on. Being mindful of materials and better ways to use them means the brand can change the status quo design narrative that apparel companies follow.

As Adidas works on becoming greener, the conception of the “Futurecraft” shoe is backed with hope to re-invent design as we know it. It’s the first performance running shoe–and one of the first consumer products in general–designed for a circular life cycle. “When you wear out this product, you give it back to us. And we recycle it,” says Tanyaradzwa Sahanga, materials engineer at Adidas. “We can take that recycled output, those ground bits of shoe, and put them into new shoes again.”

The Loop process isn’t 1:1 yet. One old shoe does not literally create one new shoe. While 100% of every Loop shoe can be recycled, that recycled material can only constitute 10% of the next generation of Loop shoe for the footwear to retain its level of performance. Adidas hopes to improve that ratio rapidly over the coming years, to eventually reach the ideal of 1:1 product circularity. Hundreds of thousands of eco-friendly Adidas fanatics flooded the web with a plethora of different videos and pictures before eventually 50 lucky winners were chosen to receive the shoes. As described by executive board member, Eric Liedtke, “The Futurecraft Loop is our first running shoe that is made to be remade,” a euphoric result for the end-of-life assessment of what is becoming one of Adidas’ greatest products.

In consolidation of the definition with the sales results of the “Ultraboosts”, this conclusion expresses the consumer’s desires for a more sustainable and impactful product. It’s safe to say adidas knocked the ball out of the park on this collaboration and will surely continue on the trend with the “Futurecraft” shoe.

In summary, we see that both of these two icon names are trying to improve on their weaknesses as well as make up for prior wrongdoing. To only blame these powerhouses would be a disservice to all the efforts put in by each getting them to this point; the consumer also deserves to be held to a standard in equality to what they contributed. Perhaps the next time you buy a pair of shoes and remember back to hearing sweatshop allegations or low pay for factory workers of the respective company, you chose an alternative instead. Going forward it is the responsibility of all parties to improve on these facets presented as in the end we are all stakeholders to negative impacts our planet will be faced with.

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