10. May 2022
Dow (Midland, MI, USA) has announced the launch of ENGAGE™ REN, an innovative and more sustainable brand extension to the ENGAGE™ range of high-performing polyolefin elastomers (POEs).
The new brand enabled by Dow’s Ecolibrium technology will help the footwear industry to unlock a lower carbon footprint and develop more sustainable products which offer the same high-performance results.
Some of the key benefits that Engage REN will offer manufacturers in the footwear industry include:
• Improved foam quality and polymer consistency
• Better resilience
• Lighter foams with equivalent hardness
• Improved abrasion resistance and durability.
When used alongside other recycled materials, brands will be able to offer a more complete sustainable footwear option to their customers. Soon, these products will be available to sustainability-conscious consumers thanks to Dow’s collaboration with footwear brand, Crocs (Broomfield, CO, USA). Dow has begun supplying plant-based polymers for use in Crocs’ manufacturing process of its proprietary Croslite™ material, which have an even lower CO2 impact than their current material. The company will take a mass balance approach to scaling the percentage of plant-based polymers into its footwear over time. Crocs is the first footwear brand to go-to-market with this new material technology.
Sustainably sourced bio-feedstock
Engage REN polyolefin elastomers (POEs) are produced using renewable energy and plant-based feedstocks such as used cooking oil. As only waste residues or by-products from an alternative production process are utilized, these raw feedstock materials don’t consume extra land resources nor compete with the food chain.
Engage REN bio-attributed polymers deliver equivalent performance in the final application as fossil-fuel counterparts and therefore don’t require reformulation.
“Manufacturers, brands, retailers and consumers all recognize the role they play in reducing the impact of climate change and as a result, are seeking out more sustainable options”, said Imran Munshi, Global Bio-Polymers and Consumer Market Manager at Dow. “Combining a lower carbon footprint and no compromise on performance, Engage REN provides the footwear industry with an innovative solution that enhances the sustainability profile of their products, while maintaining the same high-performance results they’ve come to expect from Dow. We are committed to enabling our customers to reduce their carbon impact and meet their sustainability targets and we are excited about how this innovation advances the market for more sustainable materials”. AT