Skatewear brand, Vans, recently introduced a sneaker made from cork. The “Prelow” sneaker, part of its premium OTW collection, now includes a cork-clad option.
Cork hails from the western Mediterranean, where it’s stripped from the trunk of the self-renewing cork-oak tree. Commercial exploitation of the material is environmentally friendly, according to the World Wildlife Fund, not only because no trees are cut down, but also because cork-oak landscapes support one of the world’s highest concentrations of forest biodiversity, including endangered species such as the Iberian Lynx. Combined with black eyelets, a fabric lining, and a squishy vulcanized-foam footbed, this is one shoe that’s all bark and no bite.