The Truth About Nike and Adidas


1 x 30'

Production company

Firecrest Films

Commissioning channels


More than 25 billion pairs of shoes are manufactured every year – that’s three per person in the world. If the trainer industry was a country, it would be the world’s 17th largest polluter But you wouldn’t know that from looking at the websites of the big brands, which are full of claims about sustainability.

Self-confessed sneaker head Darcy Thomas investigates the truth about our trainers, traveling to the Maldives to see what’s really going on.

Nike and Adidas claim that they are recycling ethically. Adidas says it is using plastic found in polluted seas to create footwear and Nike claim to grind down old trainers into materials to be put back into manufacturing. But how true is this? He discovers that the plastic Adidas claim is coming from the ocean is actually coming from a water bottle factory and in further investigation of Nike finds much of the material used in the 'grind' initiative is industrial waste.

With the practice of 'greenwashing' - a business marketing itself as more sustainable than it actually is - becoming more widespread. How do consumers really know what they are buying into?

The Truth About Nike and Adidas won the BAFTA Scotland News and Current Affairs award in November 2022.

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