Designer tires? Timberland, Omni United partner to launch recyclable wheels
- Timberland, a NH-based apparel and footwear manufacturer, has joined forces with Omni United, a manufacturer and distributor of tires with headquarters in Singapore, to produce a co-branded line of tires.
- Timberland Tires are designed to be recycled into footwear outsoles after being retired from the road.
- The tires, manufactured in the U.S., will include a specialized formula to facilitate the transformation of tires into shoes.
The tire-turned-shoe process involves numerous steps as the materials travel from automobile to human feet. Here’s how it works: consumers return used Timberland Tires to participating retailers. Omni (which has partnered with Liberty Tire Recycling) uses its new network of haulers and recyclers to sort the tires, and then the collected tires are shipped to specified recycling facilities in order to be converted into crumb rubber. From there, the crumb rubber will be processed into sheet rubber before finally being shipped to outsole manufacturers, where the compound will be used in boots and shoes.
The companies anticipate releasing the first batch of tires in August, with the second collection arriving in retail outlets next April. The expected launch date of the footwear line is Fall 2016, with the “tire recycling” aspect slated to start in 2017 or 2018, when the first batch of tires are estimated to wear out.