Sustainability Initiatives | Nunn Bush

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In Action


“At Nunn Bush we understand that everything we do has an impact on the world. We believe it’s our responsibility to embrace materials, processes and technology that reduce our environmental impact. To reach that goal we have created a step-by-step approach to sustainability that transforms our intentions into action.

We pledge to never “greenwash” or simply pay lip service to the cause. We are committed to a transparent approach to sustainability and to setting concrete goals. Our environment, social and governance strategy focuses on everything from our footwear materials, our factory partners, our offices and operations, and our people and communities.”

- Tom and John Florsheim



Fifteen ESG initiatives implemented with quantitative measures for 2022 to 2025. You’ll find more details on these initiatives below.


Purchased over 75% of our leather from Leather Working Group-certified suppliers


Initiated a Zero Waste Challenge at our Milwaukee facility, currently tracking >90% waste diversion from landfill based on a WasteCap audit


Established a baseline 25% participation rate of volunteering efforts among our employees

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Our Footwear

As part of our commitment to sustainability, we are increasing our efforts to source and use environmentally preferred materials with recycled, organic, or bio-based features and technologies.

Where We Are
Where We're Going
  • Ensure 25% of all product meets Environmentally-Preferred Material minimums
  • Phase out use of PFAS/PFC-based water repellents, solvent-based shoe construction, and odor control antimicrobials
  • Incorporate the use of bio-based alternatives using >22% bio-based alternatives to EVA/PU in insoles, midsoles and outsoles
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Our Office +
Distribution Center

Within our office and distribution centers we have undertaken steps to reduce the waste we produce, our energy consumption and overall environmental impact.

Where We Are
  • Sourcing 85-90% Forest Stewardship Council-certified recycled paperboard, soybean-based inks, and natural glues in our packaging
  • Purchased renewable energy credits (RECs) from the Bonneville Environmental Foundation for 100% of our electrical usage at our Milwaukee facility. These RECs support two renewable energy projects, the Landfill Gas Collection and Combustion Project and Parque Eólico Maldonado.
  • Worked with WasteCap to assess waste management operations at our Milwaukee facility, proving that we’re currently tracking >90% waste diversion
  • 50% reduction in cardboard waste and 30% reduction in shipping volume
  • Installed solar panels at our Milwaukee office, which supplies 10% of our energy
  • We work with UPS to offset the climate impact of all our shipments. UPS’s carbon neutral program supports projects like reforestation, landfill gas destruction, wastewater treatment, and methane destruction, that offset the emissions of the shipment’s transport.
Where We're Going
  • Measure greenhouse gas emissions and establish reduction targets for Scopes 1, 2 and 3 emissions in accordance with GHG Protocol
  • Embrace transparency of our environmental, social and governance (ESG) activities by sharing highlights, lowlights and sourcing locations on our website
  • Work together with WasteCap to achieve zero waste certification for our Milwaukee facility with actionable steps to help divert even more waste from landfills, incineration and the environment
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Our Factory

We are working with our factory partners to better understand and improve their ESG practices with emphases placed on social compliance, energy and water use, chemical management and waste reduction.

Where We Are
  • Developed a strong Social & Environmental Compliance Program with emphases on EHS, chemical management and factory environmental performance. Click to find more information for each brand:
  • Participating in Footwear Retailers & Distributors of America’s Shoe Factory Waste Program
  • Formal third-party certified social audit program and corrective action improvements in place for more than a decade
Where We're Going
  • Evaluate Shoe Factory Waste Program results and consider expanding participation to additional factory locations.
  • Utilize tools like the Higg Facility Environment Module to track all factory partners and strategic material suppliers
  • Coordinate e-learning and related ESG education for factory partners to improve social and environmental performance and compliance
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Our People

We believe a successful company empowers it’s employees to be their very best and our role is to create a culture that balances work and life.

Where We Are
  • Voter Turnout Initiative: increased employee voter turnout through education and a registration drive
  • Recruited local Diversity, Equity and Inclusion expert to make recommendations for areas of focus and next steps
  • Dedicate two weeks each year to raise money for the United Way of Greater Milwaukee & Waukesha County. Since 2004, we have donated over $2.4 million and counting.
  • Reinvigorated employee volunteering efforts and established a baseline of 25% participation rate among employees
Where We're Going
  • Establish Diversity, Equity and Inclusive creative controls for cultural appropriation in design, language, marketing assets & photography, colorways and product copy
  • Formalize a Health & Wellness Program with an emphasis on stress management, mental health, fitness, nutrition and work/life balance
  • Encourage and organize employee volunteering activities to maintain >50% participation rate for all employees



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