Remember when Salomon announced it would recycle shoes into ski boots? Well, now Tecnica is getting on board.
Tecnica just launched its Recycle Your Boots pilot program in Europe, a completely unique initiative to reduce waste and “move the ski industry closer to a circular economy,” according to the Italian brand.
Tecnica’s project, debuting in the Alps region this fall, aims to protect the planet by recycling used ski boot materials into secondary raw material. The shift will reduce waste, the brand’s use of virgin materials, and CO2 emissions.
“The idea is pretty simple,” explained Maurizio Priano, Tecnica marketing and brand manager. “We will make it possible for skiers to return their old ski boots of any brand to partner retailers, and then recycle them through a transparent and sustainable process.”
The project is similar to Salomon’s recycling initiative, which also aims to reduce industry waste, but instead by recycling shoe materials in raw ski boot material.
Recycle Your Boots With Tecnica
Here’s how Tecnica’s pilot program will work. Instead of relying on shipping, Tecnica will partner with several retailers to set up collection sites.
Retailers will collect old ski boots and transport them to Italian company Fecam, which will disassemble the boots (liner, plastic, and metal components). Then, Tecnica will employ a trusty plastics plant to transform all the plastics into secondary raw materials. And Tecnica thought of everything — even the boot liners will be shredded to make new padding material.
“Tecnica’s goal is to enable people to live their passion for mountain sports,” Priano said. “If we want this to continue in the future, we must all play our part. The Recycle Your Boots project will reduce the skiing industry’s footprint [and] support local economies by driving traffic to retailers.”
Tecnica will launch the program in Italy, France, Switzerland, Austria, and Germany. It hopes to expand to Sweden, Norway, and Spain after evaluating progress.
As for North America, Tecnica cited unique challenges to overcome before it can launch a ski boot recycling program like Europe’s. But the brand noted that “the hope is to extend the project to this side of the Atlantic if the right partners and processes can be put in place for it to succeed.”