It is estimated that up to 22 million tons of plastic end up in the oceans every year. Fish, sea birds, sea turtles, and marine mammals are all affected by plastic waste being entangled, suffocating, starving and drowning. Humans are also not safe from this threat. Despite the excessive amount of time it takes to decompose, plastic can still break into small particles that end up in the seafood we eat.

Portugal has several good examples of environmental activism to show the world. Just last year it removed more than one ton of plastic from the coast and beaches. All managed by one brand – Zouri Shoes – that united more than 600 volunteers between ONG’s, local institutions and students from national and international programs. And they didn’t stop there.

All this plastic was repurposed for one of the country’s strongest industries, being transformed into vegan eco-friendly shoes. All of this happens at the heart of Portugal, in Guimarães, where an ethical and fair production line has been established, operated entirely by Portuguese craftsmen.

Zouri’s factory guarantees quality and cares for the details. They embrace transparent production and ecological education of the consumers, choosing to describe all the materials used to create their products. More than two years of research resulted in the best vegan and eco-friendly materials. The plastic waste is being transformed into raw material and mixed with natural materials like organic cotton, natural rubber, and pineapple leaves fabric, consciously stepping aside from microfibers, synthetics, and leather.

Being ecological is an attitude. As humans and society, we can do much more than we imagine.

Don’t forget, we don’t have planet B.

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