OrthoLite investments help further its global sustainability goals.

OrthoLite has been the leading manufacturer and supplier of open-cell foam insole technologies for the world’s top footwear brands for over 25 years. The company maintains this market-leading position thanks to the excellence of the OrthoLite product collection, and to an unwavering focus on serving its 500+ global brand partners.

The global team is driven to anticipate and deliver on its brand partners’ needs in today’s fast-changing business climate. This is possible thanks to a company culture built on relationships, collaboration, and continuous innovation.

“Earning the business of the great brands we serve requires an unrelenting commitment to supporting and guiding our customers through the process of bringing comfort, performance and sustainable footwear to market. It’s what we’re known for and what we continue to live for,” notes Glenn Barrett, founder and CEO of OrthoLite.

OrthoLite’s recent actions illustrate these promises.

Creative thinking leads to a more reliable supply chain

OrthoLite began vertically integrating its operations in 2010. As of 2023, OrthoLite owns and/or operates six factories in major footwear manufacturing hubs around the world. This enables the brand to expand global capacity, while consistently delivering quality, innovation, service, and improved sustainability. Importantly, this local-for-local operational structure ensures a crucial layer of risk mitigation for the company’s brand partners.

For E.U.-based partners, OrthoLite quadrupled capacity at its factory in Almansa, Spain in 2022. Of course, brands can order from any OrthoLite factory around the world, and expect the same exceptional quality and on-time delivery.

The freedom to innovate leads to a scalable, industrially-compostable foam

In March 2022, OrthoLite introduced OrthoLite Cirql, the world’s first foam material for footwear with a circular end of life solution. Available to OrthoLite’s customers beginning in late 2023, OrthoLite Cirql was born from the goal to reduce waste and pollution in footwear.

OrthoLite Cirql foam is responsibly sourced from non-GMO materials derived from plants and synthetic biodegradable materials, then formed with a proprietary, chemical-free foaming process. It is free from “forever chemicals,” and the microplastics will biodegrade in a manner similar to natural polymers, like cellulose. The material can be returned to the production cycle by low-energy, advanced chemical recycling, or returned to nature via selected industrial composting methods.

OrthoLite Cirql provides the first technology capable of reducing the high impact of the manufacturing process at scale.  While the end of life management options exist right now, achieving scalability for those processes will involve collaboration with footwear brands and the waste management sector.

Shared values, global footprint leads to exclusive partnership with Novamont

OrthoLite partnered with international bioplastics leader Novamont to supply the OrthoLite Cirql polymer. Amidst a long roster of environmental bona fides, Novamont is a certified B-Corporation and the preeminent, global leader in compostable bioplastics.

With like-minded company values and the world-leading bio-based, compostable and recyclable polymer, Novamont is the ideal partner to complement OrthoLite’s foaming expertise and commitment to sustainability.

“Footwear is a very large consumer product segment with incredible reach and influence,” explained Barrett. “We are excited to be partnering with Novamont to escalate scalable solutions to drive positive change in the global footwear industry. This partnership is built on trust and transparency, as well as a relentless commitment to equip our 500+ global footwear brand partners to have access to single-source circular materials, starting with the midsole.”

Photo: OrthoLite

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