Saucony is now selling a sneaker inspired by millennials’ favorite food.
The men’s Shadow 6000 Avocado Toast is made of brown leather and what the company calls green “smashed avocado textured suede” and features red-pepper flake speckle on the collar lining and a “Saucamole” shout-out on the heel.
The sneakers cost $130 – or about 10 times the cost of the hipster menu item.
Sneakerheads and foodies are gobbling up the new tennis shoe. As of 3:30 p.m. ET Wednesday, 11 of the 17 sizes were no longer available on the company’s website. The shoe is also for sale at select sneaker boutiques around the country.
“Celebrate your health kick,” the company’s site says. “It’s everything you avo-wanted, even if the guac is extra.”
Only 1,200 pairs were made, according to Saucony spokesman Jason Faustino, who added that another food-related sneaker is coming in August.
No word from the brand as to how its avocado toast sneakers will impact millennials’ home-buying.
This isn’t the first time Saucony has turned to a menu for shoe inspiration. They suggested America runs on Dunkin’ – literally – when in March 2018, right before the Boston Marathon, they teamed with Dunkin’ Donuts to create a doughnut-themed sneaker, decorated with pictures of sprinkles, coffee and doughnuts and the DD logo.
Nor is Saucony the only sneaker company to produce a food-related shoe. Nike has done ones based on desserts, chicken and waffles, Starbucks, breakfast cereals and Krispy Kreme. Converse had a sneaker with a Coca-Cola theme. And Vans has adorned its shoes with pictures of everything from tacos and pizza to cupcakes and hamburgers.
And at least one tennis shoe came about via opposite route – with a food brand heading into the sneakerverse. In March 2018, Pizza Hut unveiled its Bluetooth technology-enabled Pie Tops II, which let the wearer order pizza by pressing a button on the shoe.
Like the limited-time offers fast-food companies use to create buzz about their brands, the Saucony Shadow 6000 Avocado Toast is the latest in footwear industry’s line of stunt sneakers.
“It’s not commercially important, but it gets them a ton of attention,” said Matt Powell, senior industry adviser for sports at the research firm NPD Group. “It’s about publicity, it’s about marketing and it’s about having a bit of fun.”
U.S. retail sales of sneakers were an estimated $21.2 billion in 2018, according to NPD. That’s up from $19.6 billion in 2017.
“The pleasant experience of having avocado toast at brunch on Sunday allows you to carry the feeling into your shoes as well,” Powell said. “Having something to wear on your feet, your body, having your favorite indulgent food are feel-good things that help us go through what we’re going through right now. … ‘I love avocado toast and therefore, I bought shoes that look like them.”
Saucony is owned by Rockford, Michigan-based Wolverine Worldwide, whose other brands include Keds, Hush Puppies, Sperry and Stride Rite.