It’s a great time to be alive right now, in terms of product development. We’re seeing a lot of designers and manufacturers experiment with various materials, especially those that are more earth-friendly than the usual things like plastics, polyester, nylon, and others that may not be so great for the environment in the long run. The shoe industry has seen some great innovations over the past years and now we might see a pair of shoes made from bacteria.
Designer: Modern Synthesis
It might not look so great if your headline is that the pair of shoes you’re wearing uses bacteria as its main material. But this biotechnology company is now looking at growing or cultivating “microbial textiles” in its laboratory and use this to create a more sustainable material for shoes and other kinds of footwear. They are using the sugar you can derive from plant waste and microbes and then turn it into nanocellulose.
Form there, it produces a synthetic textile that actually looks like nylon but has more of a paper feel. But they do say that this is actually stronger than Kevlar so don’t think that your shoes will dissolve in water when it rains. Manufacturers will be able to add some more coatings and dye to transform it into other materials, including synthetic leather or at least something leather-like. Bacteria cellulose is actually used in food like kombucha and nata de coco but apparently, it can be turned into footwear as well.
This experiment is still in its early stages probably as we’re not seeing yet actual footwear from the company. There are some prototypes reportedly being created with some brands to test out the materials. Hopefully, we can see some actual shoes soon to see if the eco-friendly material can be transformed into fashionable and durable shoes.