When the Lions come to mind, you might not immediately think "GREEN," what with their Detroit base and Ford ownership. But with the help of Unifi and Repreve, the team's trying to flip that perception, trotting out green -- in a very literal sense -- practice jerseys.
On August 6 the Lions will turn training camp green, wearing the jerseys you see above in order to #TurnItGreen at training camp.
The bright green jerseys are made by Unifi, who uses the Repreve brand to take plastic bottles and recycle them into fibers.
“Recycling is critical, yet surprisingly only 30 percent of plastic bottles are recycled in the U.S., significantly less than other countries,” Unifi COO Roger Berrier said. "Together with the Detroit Lions, we are working to highlight the ease of in-stadium recycling and showcase the benefits of recycling. Hopefully franchises from all major sports will follow the Lions’ lead and join the #TurnItGreen movement."
The Lions are also putting Pepsi/Repreve recycling bins around Ford Field and if fans hit a 100 percent recycling rate during the season the Detroit Lions Academy will score some new Repreve clothing.
Each one of the jerseys is made out of 21 recycled bottles and the Lions will be giving away green towels -- each one recycled from three bottles -- to fans at training camp as well. There's also a "Make the Smart Throw" slogan around the initiative; there are promotions that will let the fans end up tossing the rock with Lions quarterbacks.
And the field goals will also be painted "Repreve green" and then donated to a local high school after the event.
Ever since recycling got to be a "normal" thing (no one fights over whether or not it's smart/needed/etc; it's pretty obvious it's good) it feels like people tend to gloss over it more than they should.
Good on the Lions and Unifi for helping to promote a worthwhile cause with some fan interaction as well.