Adidas goes local to make new Timbers jerseys

The Portland Timbers' Darlington Nagbe models the club's new third jersey that was unveiled Tuesday. Adidas America Inc. designed and manufactured the limited jerseys in the Portland area using 100 percent recycled material.

The Portland Timbers unveiled Tuesday a new jersey that, in a first for Adidas, was made entirely in the Portland metro area.

The white, retro-inspired jersey also marks the first time the German apparel brand has produced an on-field athletic jersey made entirely from recycled materials.

The idea of going all-local was spawned from Adidas’ North American headquarters in Portland, which designs and develops the kits — soccer parlance for uniforms — for all 19 Major League Soccer clubs.

“It was very much in the spirit of Portland being very local,” said Antonio Zea, director of soccer at Adidas America Inc. “‘Made in Portland’ we felt carried something that would be of value to the fan.”

Zea said Adidas worked with a factory in Clackamas, called Spade, that it typically uses to produce low-volume prototypes.

In this case, the local factory produced 2,012 of the authentic game jerseys being sold for $175 as part of a limited-edition box set that includes a scarf bearing a 70s-era Timbers script.

It will produce more of the jerseys, including for on-field wear, the volume of which will be determined by the Timbers’ needs.

The use of locally sourced production shouldn’t be viewed as a sign of things to come for Adidas.

The Portland jerseys, the third for the Timbers, were a one-off for Adidas, which sources much of its product out of Asia. The company, for example, will use its Asian suppliers to make the lower-priced replica Timbers third jerseys that will be released in early 2012.

“This is really just something that was unique to Portland,” Zea said. “We’ve got no plans to do anything like it in the future.”

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