Produced in a green, union-run facility in Brazil that runs on hydroelectricity and recycles its waste, Neuaura’s eco-conscious shoes are completely devoid of fur, leather, silk, or wool. Plus, the company donates a portion of its annual sales to charities that work to improve animal welfare and the environment, including the Wildlife Conservation Society for 2011.
Noharm bears the stamp of approval from no less than Britain’s Vegan Society, along with an ethos that opposes child labour and worker exploitation. Its dapper men’s oxfords, loafers, and boots are ethically handcrafted in Italy, where they’re packaged in biodegradable boxes printed with environmentally friendly inks.
Novacas—named for the Spanish and Portuguese word for “no cow”—manufactures its vegan, PVC-free men’s and women’s shoes in worker-friendly factories in Portugal that align with European Union labor standards. It uses nontoxic, 100 percent biodegradable uppers whenever the opportunity presents itself, along with high-quality synthetics that stretch, breathe, and wear just like the genuine article.
In addition to nontoxic, environmentally preferable synthetics—including a microfiber derived from recycled televisions—Olsenhaus plies its wares with sustainable materials such as organic cotton, linen, and cork. All its shoes are fairly handmade in Central America, where production is kept as local as possible to minimize its footprint.
ELIZABETH’S KIND CAFE
Handmade in the United States, derived from recycled plastic bottles, and completely animal-free, Elizabeth Katzman’s nascent shoe line is a triple threat to reckon with. Bonus: a portion of every sale benefits People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals and 1% for the Planet.
It all started with a simple lace-up shoe, but Vegetarian Shoes has come a long way since 1990. Two decades later, its extensive range of men’s and women’s styles are made to order in factories across the United Kingdom and Europe, including England’s oldest co-op, which was first established in 1881.