VEJA: Positive Steps
Founded in France in 2005, VEJA work with cooperatives of small producers and social associations in Brazil and France to produce a stylish range of fair trade and ecologically produced trainers. Standing up with one foot in design and the other in social responsibility, the brand are true mavericks due to the attention they bring to each stage of the manufacturing process.
VEJA is the brain child of Sébastien Kopp and François-Ghislain Morillion, who both believe strongly in the need for change within the sneaker and fashion world. Working within the fashion industry they saw first hand the negative impact on the planet and the humans involved in the production process, so they set out to make a positive change by creating VEJA.
VEJA creates a positive chain due to the fact that their products are made differently from other big brand trainers. Each stage of production is carefully considered to limit environmental and social impact. They use organic, upscaled, fairly traded cotton for the canvas of their shoes and wild, fairly traded rubber for the soles. The other technological fabrics they create, are responsibly produced from recycled plastic bottles. Combining minimalistic aesthetics with innovative technologies, each pair of trainers is hand produced to a very high standard in an assembly plant in the state of Rio Grande do Sul in southern Brazil.
The VEJA canvas is made from 100% organic and fair trade cotton. The cotton is grown by a co-operative of small farmers who have adopted agro-ecological methods. No chemicals or pesticides are used on crops, farmers are paid fair prices and the also use up-cycled cotton too.
Every VEJA outer sole is made from 40% of rubber from the Amazon rainforest, with the tappers being paid fair prices. Using wild rubber from the amazon increases the economic value of the forest and helps in the fight against deforestation.
Going against convention, VEJA have built a successful brand without any advertising or marketing expenses. Instead they opt to using their budget on the phases that comes before the assembly line. Raw material producers are therefore more justly compensated, social and environmental impacts are constantly optimised, and their trainers are manufactured in conditions where everyone gets the respect they deserve.
VEJA believe in transparency in every aspect of their business, not only in being innovative in the way they make, source and create their trainers but also by applying the same ideas to their offices, shipping and logistics. Partnering with amazing organisations that strive to put human welfare and the planet before profit.
The brand purposefully take longer to design their shoes than other big brands as they believe in longevity over transient trends. They want you to still be proud to wear a pair of their trainers for many years to come and not just for a season. Roo’s Beach have been stocking VEJA since 2017 and we couldn’t agree more with the brand’s ethos. With classic, timeless profiles in beautiful colourways discover out latest VEJA trainers edit.