As part of its “Planet Friendly” initiative, Scarpa has launched five models of trail-runners and light hikers for next spring that contribute to the program’s goal of reducing the carbon footprint of this Italian company. The new shoes – the trail-runners “Pursuit” and “Pursuit GTX”; the “Epic”, a hiking shoe based on a trail-runner; and the light hikers “Moraine” and “Moraine GTX” – are all made with significant portions of recycled materials.

The midsoles use EcoPure, an additive that helps break down the shoe’s EVA contents in a landfill in 20 years, compared with more than 1,000 years without EcoPure.

The Planet Friendly initiative is a commitment by the Italian company to sourcing and using more recycled contents. It recently became the first company to bring a free-ride and telemark ski boot made of 90 percent bio-based recyclable materials to the market.

The boot uses Pebax Rnew, a new form of Pebax made 90 percent from castor oil, instead of petroleum-based oil. It requires 29 percent less fossil fuel and reduces production emissions by 32 percent.

Like more and more brands of outdoor boots from the Montebelluna region, Scarpa has been producing its light trekking boots in China since the beginning of 2008, but most of its shoes are made at its own Italian factory and by a subcontractor in Romania. The company had total revenues of €36 million in 2008.

Scarpa, which means “shoe” in Italian, spells its company name as S.C.A.R.P.A., which is an acronym for a long company name that reads as Società Calzaturiera Asolana Riunita Pedemontana Anonima.

Founded by a British nobleman in the town of Asolo in 1938, Scarpa and its present owners have an interesting history. It’s part of the company’s profile in the outdoor chapter of a 430-page report just released by our publishing firm on all the aspects of the complex Italian sporting goods industry and market. The outdoor chapter alone measures 31 pages (more information about the report under www.edmpublications.com).