For being such an influential company in the skiing industry, I believe Salomon has a long way to go on their sustainability initiatives. The Shift Pro 100 ski boot, though extremely effective on the slopes, is a product that leaves a lot of room for growth. Being a hard good, and a good representation of what the company has to offer, the brand has room to make vast improvements to prove their efforts are paying off in this product specifically. From materials, to production, to shipping, the boots seem to represent a lack of attention to detail in terms of sustainability. Their site seems to give extensive information on their plans, but there is a lack of evidence to prove their many claims. In order to boost their credibility and improve confidence from their consumers, Salomon must start offering more evidence on their initiatives and their progress on them. I also advise them to narrow in on certain goals to focus on, since it is difficult to address so many at once. On the whole, I believe Salomon has the ability to make change in the ski industry, they just have to begin in products such as these boots.
The Shift Pro 100 Boots are one of the company’s best selling boots, with numerous impressive features that allow for flexibility and versatility on the mountain. The description featured on the company’s website offers in-depth details on the materials included in the boot, such as riveted aluminum, polyolefin, and polyurethane. However, the website only states that these materials improve the durability and lifespan of the boot rather than gives insight on their sustainability and manufacturing process. Polyurethane is a form of plastic, which is unsustainable in its production, and the variety of other materials aren’t created from recycled sources. These factors don’t align with the company’s goals of sustainable production that are seen in their soft products such as their apparel and accessories. As a whole, only 45% of the company’s suppliers are bluesign partners, which leaves room for improvement. Additionally, the brand states that they encourage customers to properly get rid of their old gear once they’ve shredded their last run, but don’t say how they do so.
As far as packaging goes, Salomon’s site is unclear in their exact plans for sustainable packaging, rather stating that they are working on developing more sustainable ways of packing. This is a trend I saw throughout sustainability initiatives on the site. Though they state that they have goals, their actual actions are unclear, with many saying they are being developed without offering information on how they are doing so.
Though Salomon does offer some areas of focus for production, they are not transparent in their progress in these areas. Their emissions report is the best indicator of how their company is doing, and many categories see an increase in carbon emissions rather than the attempted decrease they claim to be paying attention to. Though this transparency is to be noted, it is clear that there is much more to be done as far as practices to reduce environmental impact in their manufacturing process. It seems that this can be done in managing their building energy, which has seen a 5% increase in emissions since 2014. Investing in renewable energy for their factories and corporate centers is a potential solution for this increase, as well as encouraging sustainable habits with employees.
Salomon sports was started by a family in the Alps in 1947 and has grown to become a giant in the world of snow sports. They are especially known for their alpine and nordic skis, boots, bindings, and other gear. Their website features their sustainability plan, known as the play minded program, that highlights their initiatives in multiple aspects of the company, from their products to their staff. They outline many goals and initiatives that are specific in each category, but don’t include much information on their progress so far or the direct actions they are taking. Though I admire the amount of thought put in to creating a high number of goals, I think it would be more effective for the company to outline a smaller set of goals and what they are doing to achieve them rather than attempting to tackle many issues at once. With this, it would be clearer what Salomon’s intentions truly are, for the current information offered makes it seem like they are not entirely invested in their plans.
On its sustainability page, the website highlights the opportunities to offers to those working in design, such as. encouragement for carpooling, social activities, and resources for health and safety. However, this is simply in their design team rather than in all their factories. The sustainability report released by Amer Sports, Salomon’s parent company, simply states that they have completed certifications for their factories rather than truly giving a feel of their working conditions. I would like to see more information on this in order to have clarity on the treatment of workers in factories rather than just certifications to show that they are up to code.