Vans is an American shoe manufacturer founded in 1966 and headquartered in Costa Mesa, California. It creates skateboarding shoes and related clothing products for consumers around the world.

VF Corporation owns Vans along with The North Face, JanSport, Timberland, Dickies, Eastpak, Eagle Creek, among others (more than 30 outdoor, activity-based lifestyle, and workwear brands in total).

Vans specializes in clothing, boots, shoes, flats, slippers, and sneakers for snow, surf, and other skatepark adventures. It creates streetwear and footwear for women, men, and kids.

Vans is committed to inspiring youth culture by protecting the planet and its resources for future generations. Together with its parent company and other corporate siblings, it innovates to reduce the environmental footprint of its operations and products.

Vans aims to enable creative expression by supporting art, music, and action sports programs through monetary and in-kind donations and volunteering.

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Sustainability Rating: 5/10

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Category: Clothing, shoes, bags, accessories

For: Women, men, children

Type: Basics, dresses, sportswear, outerwear, sneakers, boots, sandals, flats

Style: Casual

Quality: Medium

Price: $$

Sizes: XS-2XL, 4-14 (US), 6-16 (UK), 34-46 (EU), 6-16 (AU)

Fabrics: Cotton, linen, hemp, jute, lyocell, modal, viscose, acetate, polyester, nylon, spandex, acrylic, polyethylene, polyurethane, rubber, leather, wool

100% Organic: No

100% Vegan: No

Ethical & Fair: Yes

Recycling: Yes

Producing country: Albania, Bangladesh, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Canada, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, France, Georgia, Greece, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, India, Indonesia, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Keny, Mauritius, Mexico, Republic Of Moldova, Morocco, Nicaragua, North Macedonia, Pakistan, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovenia, Taiwan, Thailand, Turkey, Ukraine, United States, Vietnam

Certifications: FSC, GRS, LWG

Sustainability Practices

Vans works to lower its environmental footprint and is committed to making progress for a better future. It strives to use better materials in its products and packaging.

Vans uses a low proportion of sustainable fabrics such as better cotton (BCI), linen, hemp, and jute. It also uses some recycled polyester and regenerated nylon.

Vans make a lot of its clothes, shoes, bags, and accessories with polluting, synthetic, petroleum-based fibers, such as polyester, nylon, spandex, acrylic, polyethylene, and polyurethane.

The streetwear brand also creates some garments with semi-synthetic fibers or regenerated cellulosic fabrics such as Tencel lyocell, modal, acetate, and viscose.

As part of VF Corporation, Vans uses the same supply chain as its parent company. It publishes a list of its manufacturing and processing facilities and makes it available publicly on its corporate website.

It also monitors most of its supply chain and all its main production sites to ensure compliance with social and labor standards.

The company is expanding its traceability and transparency efforts as well as collaborating with human rights experts, governments, international organizations, and non-profits to conduct ongoing human rights due diligence.

The 2020 Fashion Transparency Index gave VF Corporation a score of 59% based on how much the group discloses about its social and environmental policies, practices, and impacts. VF Corporation earned 7th place in the top 10 most transparent brands.

Vans doesn't use any exotic animal skin, or hair, fur, angora. But it uses leather and wool to manufacture many of its clothes and shoes.

These animal-derived materials are cruel and unethical. They also harm the environment by producing greenhouse gases and wastes. More sustainable alternatives exist.

Sustainability Goals

Together with VF Corporation, Vans commits to being a leader in the large-scale commercialization of circular business models by 2030.

It wants to contribute to local communities and empower consumers to live more active and sustainable lifestyles.

Vans has reduction targets for its greenhouse gas emission in line with meeting the goals of the Paris Agreement.

It partners with global consultancy the Carbon Trust to gather data from its suppliers and plans an absolute reduction of Scope 1 and 2 greenhouse gas emissions by 55% by 2030 (2017 baseline).

Vans also plans an absolute reduction of Scope 3 greenhouse gas emissions by 30% by 2030 (2017 baseline) through a focus on farm-to-retail materials, sourcing operations, and logistics.

Vans aims to halve its upstream environmental impact, farm-to-front door by 2050. It has a system in place to improve the lives of 2 million workers and their communities by 2025.

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