Reebok Nabs PETA Award for Futuristic ‘Cotton + Corn’ Shoes

Retailer's Plant-Based Sneakers Are Now 100% Leather-Free

For Immediate Release:
April 18, 2019

Moira Colley 202-483-7382

Boston – With a sole made from corn and a body made from organic cotton, the shoes developed through Reebok‘s new Cotton + Corn initiative have earned the company an Innovator for Animals Award from PETA. The sports-gear giant first launched the collection with leather pieces on the tongue and heel, but after hearing from PETA, it replaced the leather with a vegan material, making the range petroleum- and leather-free.

“Reebok is at the forefront of a vegan revolution using high-tech materials that are kind to the Earth and all its inhabitants,” says PETA President Ingrid Newkirk. “PETA is calling on retailers around the world to follow Reebok’s example and develop high-performance fabrics that spare cows terrible deaths and spare the environment toxic tanneries.”

A PETA video exposé of the world’s largest leather producer revealed that gentle cows and bulls were branded on the face, electroshocked, and beaten before being killed for their skin. The process of turning animal skin into leather also requires the use of chemicals, including cyanide, and produces massive amounts of the carbon dioxide emissions that contribute to climate change.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to wear”—opposes speciesism, which is a human-supremacist worldview. The group has previously given Innovator for Animals awards to Piñatex, which creates durable vegan leather from pineapples, and to The North Face, for both its silk-free Moon Parka and its down-free ThermoBall technology.

For more information, please visit

For Media: Contact PETA's
Media Response Team.


Get PETA Updates

Stay up to date on the latest vegan trends and get breaking animal rights news delivered straight to your inbox!

By submitting this form, you’re acknowledging that you have read and agree to our privacy policy and agree to receive e-mails from us.

 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind