Timberland Aims to Build Footwear’s First Regenerative Rubber Supply System
Timberland is aiming to build the world’s first regenerative rubber supply system for footwear by 2023. The announcement was made on April 27 and aligns with the company’s Terra Genesis International partnership, a collaboration that extends to Timberland’s parent company, VF Corporation, and its sibling brands, Vans and The North Face. Timberland will also expand its Regenerative Leather footwear collection and is working toward having a net-positive impact on the earth by 2030.
“At Timberland, we strive for a greener and more equitable future, and investing in regenerative agriculture is one of the most powerful levers we have to achieve this vision,” Zack Angelini, senior manager of environmental stewardship for Timberland, said. “We are excited about the progress we’re making to source our top-volume materials in a way that supports the farmers and ranchers working to reverse environmental degradation and create a world that is more abundant, more resilient and even more beautiful than it is today.”
Traditional rubber sourcing degrades biodiversity and contributes to rainforest deforestation in Southeast Asia. The regenerative rubber would focus on mimicking a natural-forest ecosystem by using various tree species and enhancing the overall ecosystem.
It would also help farmers have multiple streams of income, one of hopefully multiple incentives for farmers to transition to regenerative agriculture.
“As a consumer-led brand with a vision to build an equitable and green future, Timberland is perfectly placed to translate the concept and benefits of regenerative agriculture to the next generation,” Drieke Leenknegt, global vice president of marketing for Timberland, said.