Japanese Manufacturers Develop a Shoe Made of BiomassMoonStar Co., a Japanese shoe manufacturer, announced August 1, 2007, that it and Kuraray Plastics Co., a Japanese plastics and chemicals manufacturer belonging to the Kuraray Group, have jointly developed a new type of shoe made of biomass, in the form of a soft polylactic acid resin, and named it "Biomass Hadashikko" ("hadashi" means "barefoot" in Japanese).
As a useful material made from cornstarch or other starch, polylactic acid is gaining the spotlight. MoonStar has been examining the application of the acid for shoes for several years, while Kuraray Plastics quickly launched research on softening the polylactic acid resin in order to overcome its disadvantages, which include hardness, brittleness, and susceptibility to heat, and it successfully developed a material suitable for shoe soles. Technical cooperation between the two companies made the world's first commercialization using this material a reality.
Key features of the Biomass Hadashikko shoes include the fact that both the soles and the upper parts are made from plant-derived material, they have antibacterial properties due to silver ions (Ag), they are antifungal-treated, the instep straps of the shoes are adjustable, toes can move freely inside, and the insides provide a barefoot-like comfort.
MoonStar has systemized its many years of research, design, and production know-how for shoemaking into its "Comfort Saver" technology, and will incorporate the biomass material into its product line to strengthen its commitment to the environment.
Posted: 2007/12/22 06:12:13 PM
| Posted by jfs |