AMHERST, Mass. — March 1, 2022 — OrthoLite, the 25-year industry leader of branded, high performance, comfort footwear solutions, today unveiled its first-ever midsole foam innovation to elevate sustainability in the footwear industry: Cirql.
OrthoLite Cirql is the critical solution needed to achieve true circularity within the footwear industry, and is the world’s first EVA plastics-free, recyclable, biodegradable and industrially compostable foam. Powered by plants, Cirql offers a pure foam alternative to conventional plastics and is made from responsibly-sourced plants and biodegradable materials.
The GMO-free, plant-based material utilized in Cirql is free from any “forever chemicals,” and is created through a zero-waste, chemical-free foaming process. The patented ground-breaking process ensures unmatched sustainability in a midsole that delivers on OrthoLite’s highest standards of performance, comfort, and sustainability.
“At OrthoLite, operating sustainably has been central to our DNA since our inception 25 years ago, and Cirql represents our continued commitment to this effort and a natural extension of our mission and vision,” said Glenn Barrett, OrthoLite founder and CEO. “Worldwide footwear production has increased by over 20 percent since 2010 with no signs of slowing down. As an industry, the onus is on all of us to help mitigate our environmental impact on the planet. It’s going to take an industry wide commitment and a concerted effort, and Cirql is a major step in that direction.”
Containing no forever-chemicals or persistent microplastics, at the end of its useful life cycle, Cirql can be industrially composted, making it the first ever, soil-to-soil solution for footwear foam. Cirql effectively biodegrades back into nutrient-rich, soil compost. Additionally, Cirql foam is able to be depolymerized and recycled for reuse.
Patented worldwide and with a commitment to full transparency and third-party validation,
Cirql has undergone extensive third-party testing and analysis to include a complete Life Cycle IVL Assessment and is Certified Industrial Compostable – (Din Certco), REACH-certified (EU) and USDA Certified Bio Preferred®, RSL compliant (Intertek), certified GMO-free, certified Vegan and Hypoallergenic.
Cirql’s extensive testing and certifications confirm the critical importance of measuring and validating the full environmental impact of the raw materials, finished product, production and manufacturing process, transportation, and distribution.
Cirql is headquartered in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, and led by General Manager and Cirql Vice President Matt Smith. With more than 21 years of international experience in the footwear industry, Smith has built the Cirql division from the ground up, leading production direction, and establishing and managing partner relationships. Together with the Cirql team, he also facilitates the ongoing support and education required on the Cirql technologies, including: product development, innovation, and R&D.
“With its global reach and impact, Cirql technology sets a new standard in truly sustainable footwear,” said Matt Smith, General Manager and VP of Cirql. “Our flagship factory, the Cirql Center of Excellence, is a model for the way we resource factories to evolve toward a zero-waste production process and end of life product solutions. Our model can be used as a template for footwear brands and their Tier 1 factory partners to move away from traditional foam materials and processes and into a new era for sustainable footwear manufacturing.”
Cirql is a revolutionary alternative to conventional EVA plastics and provides footwear brands and their factory partners a more sustainable choice in materials and the ability to make a shift from what is currently utilized for midsoles. The technology is available to footwear brands that share a vision for the future of sustainable footwear. Applications run the spectrum from athletic to casual, fashion, work, and kids footwear. OrthoLite invites its partners to join them on this journey.
Posted: March 1, 2022