Better World – Plastic Bottles or Soccer Jerseys?

Recycled Soccer Jerseys – Goal!

In a responsible and committed move, Nike rethought the material of their soccer jerseys for the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa. They used recycled polyester, made from plastic water bottles, with up to eight bottles being used per jersey. To make these 2010 national team uniforms, Nike’s fabric suppliers sourced plastic bottles from landfill sites in Japan and Taiwan, then melted them down in order to produce the yarn that was ultimately used for the jerseys.

This commitment from Nike to produce more responsible apparel is something that can only resonate positively with their audience. Brand moves like this are difficult to fault and do great work to get people believing in your brand promise and environmental commitment. Your brand wins and the planet wins too.

“The national team kits represent an important step in the process to make all Nike products more sustainable.”     Nike Press Release


By doing this, Nike managed to reduce their energy consumption by 30% when compared to manufacturing virgin polyester. And by using recycled polyester for these jerseys, Nike prevented just under 13 million plastic bottles from going to landfill sites. This is the equivalent of around 254 000 kg of plastic waste, which could cover twenty-nine football pitches.

Video Case – The making of recycled football jerseys:

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