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PATH FINDERS Footwear speeds into the circular economy.


FUTURES New think tank envisions a renewed outdoor industry.

51 MILL.

Acres protected by The Conservation Alliance since 1989.


SURVEY What do retailers say about sustainability?





Proving the sceptics wrong.

Our guide to leather sustainability.

Good brands share good stories.

For almost 40 years, Patagonia has supported grassroots activists working to find solutions to the environmental crisis. Now we’re extending this commitment—connecting you with organizations fighting to protect your community.

© 2019 Patagonia, Inc.

Find out about events happening in your area

Volunteer your skills to local grassroots organizations

Donate money directly to local causes

Sign petitions supporting issues you care about

3 QUESTIONS TO TANYA & CATHERINE EOCA has launched a new, large campaign. What is it about?

Yes, we call it “Plastic Free – Mountain to Sea.” All monies raised will be going towards a huge number of clean up events from beach to river, lake, trail and mountain across Europe. Raising awareness and educating people on the issues with single use plastic, and how to reduce their use of it too.


What have you done so far?

This March, tens of thousands of outdoor enthusiasts joined our annual spring public vote. As a result of the public vote and also the member companies’ private vote, six new projects have been selected for EOCA to support. With almost €150,000 being pledged to these projects, this also marks a new milestone in the history of EOCA – we have now funded €3 million in vital conservation projects around the world!

Will the new campaign be present at OutDoor by ISPO?

Yes, EOCA has asked companies going to the trade show to sign up to a Plastic Pledge, committing them to not using any single use plastic on their stand, also making sure all staff have reusable cups and mugs. We also want them to provide drinking water for every visitor with a refillable cup or bottle that comes to their stand. Over half the membership of EOCA who are exhibiting at the show have already signed up.


Tanya Bascombe & Catherine Savidge General Managers, EOCA




Initiated by the




58 Locally produced eco polyester?

14 News

The latest in Outdoor.

20 Sane Membrane

Dimpora’s eco membrane cracks the functional dilemma.


Gabriel Arthur, Editor-in-chief

26 Gear-for-rent



A Swedish company’s mission to prove rental-sceptics wrong.

34 Footwear Collaborations

Trail-running brands seeking new paths together.

38 Recycled Shoes

Complex problems require ­complex solutions. Enter SOEX.

42 Leather Lessons

Suston’s materials school of ­sustainable leather.

52 Retail in Numbers



’m writing this text from my favorite ­hotel in Copenhagen, a place I discovered back in 2008, when it was still a small eco-pioneer. Today, it is a successful international hotel chain. It has a fantastic breakfast buffet with mostly local produce. 98.6 percent of the food is organic according to the latest audit from the Danish authorities. The stoves run on 100 percent renewable energy and if I wanted, I could follow the scrambled eggs’ supply chain the whole way back. After breakfast, I put on my recycled polyester shell jacket and go for a long walk. I wonder what this jacket’s hangtag might have contained if judged by the same standards as the hotel. “We don’t know if the manufacturer uses renewable energy or how they source their raw goods. Disclaimer: the origins may from the beginning be fossil fuels extracted in a dictatorship.” The hotel is unquestionably exclusive, but maybe some would also prefer a more expensive jacket if they knew how the entire supply chain works with sustainability? Today’s outdoor enthusiasts don’t yet ­demand the same transparency for their shell jackets as the guests do of this successful ­hotel. But the times are changing rapidly. Will the outdoor industry be able to stay ahead of the curve? In this issue of Suston, we listen to many voices who say the answer needs to be “yes.”

Suston and EOG present the results of its Retail Sustainability Survey.

58 Outdoor Think Tank

Sustainability may not be enough – do we need net positive?

70 Program

Events at OR Summer Market.

Suston Editor-in-chief: Gabriel Arthur, Editor: Jonathan Frænkel-Eidse Art director: Susan Larsen & Melanie Haas Layout: Pär Ljung Cover illustration: Graham Samuels Editorial advisory board: Arne Strate, Cira Riedel, Joel Svedlund

Partner cooperation and sales: Karen Hensel, Suston is published by NORR Agency., +46 8 462 0707 Metargatan 11 116 66 Stockholm, Sweden

suston – 7


SURROUNDED BY a mantle of green forested hills and nuzzled up along an island-spotted fjord, if any capital had the natural prerequisites to become a great, green city, it’s Oslo. The only thing standing in the way of this destiny was the city itself, which most visitors would have written off as a charmless, loud and polluted port. Until recently, that is. For a little over a decade, Norway’s capital has enjoyed both an economic boom – that has transformed the city skyline beyond recognition – and a simultaneous Green frenzy. Symptomatic of this dual trend is Losæter, an urban community located in the heart of Oslo’s newly constructed business district. “As the city has grown, we become urban dwellers and office workers and distance ourselves from the land and the great circles of life where food comes from the soil and returns to soil,” explains Andreas Capjon, coordinator of the urban farm. “We are now continuously overwhelmed by the interest in growing the city green – and edible. People crave it.” Today, Oslo is taking considerable strides to clean up its act – rising from “European-Embarrassment” to “European Green Capital” status virtually overnight. Oslo is, for example, one of just a handful of cities around the world that is so intrepid as to try to meet the goals of the Paris Agreement – and even exceed them. Largely thanks to the electrification of transport and strict building codes, Oslo is in fact currently on track to a 36 % reduction of greenhouse gases compared to 1990 levels by 2020. Moreover, it is targeting a whopping 95 % reduction by 2030, essentially 20 years ahead of the Paris Agreement timeline. All this despite being one of Europe’s fastest-growing cities. Winning the title 2019 European Green Capital is ­certainly a feather in Oslo’s hat and a much-deserved ­recognition to the efforts of its government and people.



CO-FOUNDED IN 1989 by Kelty, Patagonia, REI and The North Face, The Conservation Alliance is the outdoor industry’s own, native conservation organization. This year, it celebrates 30 years of impact. “I’m not blowing smoke when I say we’ve mostly had successes,” shares Executive Director John Sterling. Together with its grantees, The Conservation Alliance has to date helped protect 51 million acres, 3,107 river miles, removed or halted 34 dams, purchased 14 climbing areas and designated 5 marine reserves. “The only major setbacks have been external factors beyond our control.” Recent developments in American politics, for one. Anticipating that the conservation legal landscape was about to be turned upside-down following the 2016 election, The Conservation Alliance began preparing a new strategy. Just in case. It turned out their caution was justified as the Trump administration wasted little time in loosening public land protections, including the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. “That was a bad month,” John reflects, and continues: “We’ve invested hundreds of thousands of dollars to permanently protect this area, and now the possibility of seeing oil platforms there is hard to swallow.” Fortunately, having established a full-time advocacy position as well as a separate Public Defence Fund, The Conservation Alliance was ready to meet these new challenges and came out swinging. “Previously, all funds went to creating new protections. Now, we’re investing in defending already protected land.” Today, it seems conservation battles thought won can no longer be taken for granted. Yet in spite of recent setbacks, John is confident that public lands will win the day in court and his belief in The Conservation Alliance’s purpose remains unshaken: “This all goes to show that maybe nothing’s permanent, but with The Conservation Alliance I feel there’s a permanent voice for conservation in the outdoor industry, an industry where we’ve helped establish conservation as a core value.”



ON THE TRUCK trailer’s side is a climbing wall. Mint green,

pink, yellow – the colors radiate against the blue sky. The non-profit organization Climbaid has arrived in a refugee camp in Beqaa valley in north-eastern Lebanon, with its project “A Rolling Rock.” Foam mattresses sewn in matching colors are placed below so that the kids won’t get injured if they fall. The enthusiasm of those who participate is obvious. The organization was founded in Zurich in September 2016 by Beat Baggenstos. This was a time when millions of people were on the run from war-torn Syria to one of the neighboring countries, but also by the hundreds of thousands to Europe. Through Climbaid, the founder wanted to share happiness, physical activity and plenty of color to the affected youth. Beat Baggenstos began by inviting refugees to a bouldering gym in Switzerland. Barely a year later, he traveled to Lebanon to start “The Rolling Rock” project in the enormous Beqaa Valley camp. Today, Climbaid uses a large number of volunteers from both Switzerland and Lebanon. At the time of writing, nearly 900 climbing sessions have been completed with roughly 1500 youth participants. Climbaid writes on its website that they are continuing their efforts to get people with different backgrounds to build relationships and develop their abilities through climbing, and at the same time believe that climbing can help them deal with the psychological trauma inflicted by war.


“Climate change is here + we’ve got a deadline: 12 years left to cut emissions in half. A #GreenNewDeal is our plan for a world and a future worth fighting for.”


– U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, on Twitter


Using “sustainable fashion” in its marketing is misleading to customers and is therefore illegal. This is the conclusion of the Norwegian Consumer Authority based on a report documenting actual impacts of the apparel industry giant.


Climate Strikes Take Over India THE FRIDAYS FOR FUTURE MOVEMENT, first spearheaded by teen Greta Thunberg continues to inspire parallel protests throughout the world. India alone has seen thousands of citizens, comprised largely of young people, in 71 registered strikes – of around 3200 ­globally – since March 2019. Not only have the protests served as a call for climate justice, they’ve led to community clean-ups, workshops, and even air-­ pollution mask distributions all over the country. In Bangalore, a recent protest had youth calling for a National Climate Emergency to reform climate policies. The protestors echo the warnings of the IPCC: keep the planet within 2 degrees warming or face dire consequences. Their calls come in the wake of several deadly heatwaves – recent temperatures in the desert city of Churu reached a staggering 50.8 degrees Celsius. Experts warn that developing countries like India will be most affected by changes in climate. What’s more, their large population coupled with their geography leaves them vulnerable to rising sea levels, food scarcities, and subsequent population displacement. Still, with over 70 climate strikes scheduled to come, India’s future is anything but decided. 14 – suston



After 48 years of prohibition, this year the US Congress passed and signed into law a bill that authorizes hemp agriculture across the nation, for fiber production and nutraceuticals.

CANOES FOR POLLINATORS BUTTERFLIES ARE CRITICAL in maintaining healthy ecosystems through pollination and pest control – but they’re disappearing at alarming rates. Exposure to toxic pesticides and loss of habitat due to development are largely to blame. The David Suzuki Foundation’s Butterflyway Project aims to combat this at the local level, one butterflyway at a time. From planting wildflower patches to transforming old canoes into schoolyard gardens, volunteers in Canadian cities are creating networks of habitat where pollinators can flourish – bringing communities together in the process.


The EOG and the OIA have put together a FAQ on the subject of microfibres. The FAQ aims to answer many of the recurring questions surrounding this topic and is intended to generally address the misinformation in the industry and consumer marketplace around this topic.

The Cost of ­Pollution TAX HEAVY POLLUTERS? Yes, says the OECD and a ­mega-report by the UN on how industries exacerbate species depletion and ecosystem collapse. They contend that financial models that prioritize extraction, growth and consumption are incompatible with a finite Earth. Restructuring both economic and cultural systems to where nature is explicitly accounted for and invested in, is not only necessary, but more profitable in the long-term. Given that trillions of dollars in climate-related losses are at stake, rich nations are paying attention. The issue is scheduled for review at this summer’s G7 summit in France.


WHAT IMPACT DOES YOUR T-SHIRT HAVE? By 2050 the plastics in our oceans could outweigh the fish that live there, some scientists predict. Today, microfibers make up 85% of human-made debris on shorelines around the globe. Just one machine wash of synthetic fabrics can release over 700,000 plastic microfibers, polluting our waterways and marine life. Not to mention the water wasted: 152 liters of it per wash.

Break the cycle. Wear your tee every day, wash it every once in a while. Our Tech-Lite T-shirt is made from 87% natural merino. It’s soft, breathable and odor-resistant, so you can stay active for longer between washes. Less laundry equals less time wasted. Less resources down the drain. Less plastic pollution washed into waterways. Less impact on the planet.

Small steps can bring about big changes. We’re on a mission to raise awareness of the reliance of petrochemical-based synthetics in apparel. Choosing natural fiber alternatives is better for our species and the planet. More natural solutions equals less harm. And that’s good for everyone. Individually, we can all make a difference and collectively, we can start a movement.

There has to be a better way.

Imagine a life with less plastic.

Be part of the change. Move to natural™.

suston – 15


Sleep with a Clean Conscious TRESTLES ELITE WAS already Marmot’s best-selling synthetic sleeping bag, but even so it has just received an upgrade for the better. The new Trestles Elite Eco still has the warm, lightweight and smart features of its predecessor only now it’s made of 96% recycled material, which includes the shell, lining and fill.


This Spring, Toad & Co met the goal of reaching a self-defined 100% sustainable product line. For them, this means that each garment uses a minimum of 80% sustainable fibers like organic cotton or recycled polyester and/ or fabrics that are third-party certified for responsible manufacturing.


FOSTERING SUSTAINABLE SPORTS PARTICIPATION OUTDOOR SPORTS VALLEY (OSV) is a French trade association that fosters the growth of companies in the outdoor sports industry. It does this through areas spanning economic support, training, and education, with sustainability as a focus. One of its latest initiatives, ACT for the Outdoors, offers grants to innovative projects addressing participation barriers or nature preservation in outdoor sports. 2018’s projects included habitat preservation in the French Alps, bolt maintenance at climbing crags, and mountain excursions aimed at underprivileged youth designed to inspire. 16 – suston

Spinnova has recently revealed a patented technology that transforms cellulosic fibers from wood pulp and agriculture waste into fiber for textiles. Whereas similar fiber processes, like viscose production, often require copious amounts of toxic chemicals, Spinnova’s method uses only mechanical separation.



here’s a lot of excitement building before OutDoor by ISPO opens its doors for the first time. Expectations are high that the platform will deliver a step change in showcasing new products and services, reaching new audiences, networking and of course, doing business. Our sector continues to experience rapid, accelerating change, and OutDoor by ISPO must reflect this and champion the three fundamental pillars of the outdoor industry: doing business right, protecting and restoring the natural world, and helping people to experience the outdoor mindset in a responsible way. These are our sector’s biggest points of differentiation from the competition and are key to its sustainable future. We can be rightly proud of some of the initiatives that are already underway. But we can, and should, do more. Will it cost money? Yes. But we’ll have to spend that money anyway due to consumer awareness and ever-increasing legal requirements. So, let’s stay ahead of the curve and show true leadership while we’re at it. For example, following all efforts to reduce our impacts, a net positive approach should go beyond just carbon to look at the bigger picture. By offsetting where our foundation lies – nature conservancy and active people – we can do good for both people and planet. Credible ways of documenting such offsets are in the making as I write. As general secretary at the European Outdoor Group, I’m fortunate to learn of some great ideas and initiatives that are in line with the principles outlined above. I hope that the first OutDoor by ISPO will prove to be a vibrant showcase for many of these. If that happens, it can become the start of an exciting new era for trade events, providing a platform for demonstrating and inspiring best practice in CSR and sustainability, and that could be the most important step change of all. Arne Strate, EOG General Secretary



Learn more !



The Plastic Impact Alliance, containing 200+ outdoor brands, has additionally pledged to reject singleuse plastic at this year’s show. The European Outdoor Conservation Association (EOCA) has similarly launched a campaign to stop single-use plastic at OutDoor by ISPO, with over half its members already pledging.


Nike have released a publically available circular design workbook, which offers sustainable guidelines for all designers. The aim is to provide designers and product creators across the industry with a common language for circularity.

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Outdoor Retailer has issued a ban on the sale of single-use plastic water bottles at the Summer Market fair in Denver and has joined forces with Nalgiene to help keep visitors hydrated without the waste.

Unified Outdoor Industry Descends on Washington ON MARCH 22, THE NEWLY FORMED Outdoor Busi-

ness Climate Partnership (OBCP) joined 75 businesses to advocate for carbon pricing in Washington, D.C. The mass fly-in of CEOs and industry leaders was part of the Lawmaker Education and Advocacy Day (LEAD) on Carbon Pricing, an event organized by the nonprofit Ceres. The OBCP, founded in January, is comprised of the three largest outdoor industry trade groups: the Outdoor Industry Association (OIA), National Ski Areas Association (NSAA), and Snowsports Industries America (SIA). While all three have spoken out on climate, this was the first time any of them have backed a solution as specific as ­carbon pricing, which exists in many other countries. Canada taxes carbon emissions nationwide, and the European Union has a cap-and-trade program


ALL THE MEMBERS of the Scandinavian Outdoor Group (SOG) have signed the European Outdoor Group (EOG) Sustainability Charter. Signatories of this charter align themselves to a shared agenda at a senior level and commit to pursuing a more sustainable future for all.

that lets businesses buy and trade carbon credits to ensure they collectively remain under a federally instituted emissions ceiling. Cap-and-trade exists in a few U.S. states, but a federal carbon tax has been politically unpopular. Thus, the LEAD on Carbon Pricing involved 80 meetings with lawmakers of both parties. Afterward, several legislators, including conservative Mitt Romney, publicly stated that they are considering carbon pricing. “Climate is an issue the outdoor industry can’t ignore, and carbon pricing is likely the straightest path to emissions reduction,” SIA Communications Director Chris Steinkamp tells Suston. “Lawmakers did what we wanted: They listened.” By Corey Buhay


OUTDOOR AFRO CELEBRATES its tenth anniversary. This non-profit encourages and inspires African American connections and leadership in nature. With nearly 80 leaders in 30 states, Outdoor Afro connects thousands of people to outdoor experiences who are changing the face of conservation.



Learn more !


E N A R B M E M G IN K IN RE T H oof vs. breathable pr ter wa e th to ion lut so ble ina sta su Is there a ard-winning Sane aw e th d hin be s ain br e Th ? ma em dil membrane emphatic “Yes!” Membrane, respond with an WIGE T BY COREY BUHAY PHOTO PHILIPPE

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The Search for a Better Membrane

In 2017, Greenpeace released a report revealing that the toxic polyfluorinated chemicals (PFCs) used to create waterproof membranes in rain jackets had been accumulating in the environment without degrading for the 50-plus years they’d been in use. At the time of the report, Stucki, a longtime hiker and skier, was working on his chemical engineering master’s degree in a lab that specialized in membrane technology. He realized he was uniquely positioned to help find a solution. So he called Anna Beltzung, a fellow outdoor




hen the Swiss duo Drs. Mario Stucki and Anna Beltzung applied for the H&M Foundation’s Global Change Award, they didn’t expect to make the top 20, let alone the top five who would get to split the 1 million Euro grant. Dubbed the Nobel Prize for Fashion, the award has been identifying, supporting and scaling up fashion-related circular innovations in the early stages of development since 2015. It currently receives over 14,000 applications from 182 countries every year. “When they called, we thought they might be trying to be nice and to gently tell us we didn’t win,” Stucki said. Instead, he and Beltzung learned their new waterproof membrane technology had placed second, earning them $250,000 Euros and the publicity they needed to start turning their product into a vehicle for change within the outdoor industry.

enthusiast and classmate. Together, they founded a new membrane technology company: Dimpora.

The Perfect Combination

Many outdoor industry actors have been trying to develop sustainable membranes for years, but they usually bump into the same dilemma: “Other PFC-free membranes are usually either breathable or waterproof,” Beltzung says. “Our membrane combines both.” Backed by six years of foundational research, the Dimpora membrane’s manufacturing process eschews harmful chemicals. Instead, Mario and Anna first coat tiny particles of calcium carbonate—essentially chalk dust—in a water-repellant substance. Then, they pour polyurethane (PU), a non-toxic and durable polymer, over those particles in thin sheets. When the chalk dust dissolves, it leaves its coatings in place as tiny, three-dimensional pores, which let sweat vapor escape through the PU membrane.

Dimpora’s “Sane Membrane” uses calcium carbonate to create breathable pores in an otherwise fully water-proof membrane.

A New Dream

In the beginning, when Stucki and Beltzung imagined success, they envisioned going hiking and spotting strangers wearing Dimpora rain jackets. Now, they’re thinking bigger, dreaming not only of success for Dimpora, but for the entire outdoor industry: “We want to see a global shift from single-use products to a circular use cycle. And we want Dimpora to be an integral part of this shift,” says Beltzung. suston – 21

Cogeneration heat and power station provides heat for the ICM, West Entrance, Administration Building, and generates power for the exhibition grounds

Heat supply for exhibition facility with geothermal energy 220,000 m2 of green space (ratio 21%)

One of the world‘s largest photovoltaic roof systems

Partial greening of roofs 2,500 trees

The trade fair lake is fed with rainwater and groundwater

Green recreation area in the Atrium

Bee colonies A1






A5 A6

t& Even





B2 B3








Outside Area

Am Mes


Eingang Ost / Entrance East Eingang West / Entrance West Eingang Nord / Entrance North Airport Shuttle

C4 EN Airport Shuttle



Camping Area F9/F10


C6 Conference Center Nord

aak-S nri-Sp Paul-He

F9/F10 ICM

Inside Exhibition Area Outside Exhibition Area Camping & Glamping Area Internationales Congress Center München ISPO Digitize Summit: 3.–4. Juli 2019 / July 3–4, 2019

e traß



Challenge Accepted With great impact comes great responsibility. Europe’s largest trade show sees it as its duty to accept and realize the challenge of protecting the great outdoors for future generations.


his summer, the international trade show OutDoor has moved from Friedrichshafen to Munich. Behind OutDoor stands the European Outdoor Group (EOG), and the location and organizer was chosen after a long and thorough process. This time when the new trade show takes place, now renamed OutDoor by ISPO, it will also have a much larger focus on sustainability. Markus Hefter, Exhibition Group Director at OutDoor by ISPO and ISPO Munich, explains: “Sustainability is one of the main topics the European Outdoor Group is working on. Thus, it was required in their competitive bidding for their OutDoor show to have a plan on how to deal with this topic. And the members of our OutDoor by ISPO Advisory Board confirmed what we’ve already known: “Sustainability is a must” was one of the key findings during our first meeting in 2018.” The awareness of what is at stake is growing in many industries, but within outdoor, the connection between business and nature is – or at least should be – obvious. As Kim Scholze, Community Manager Outdoor at OutDoor by ISPO, describes it: “Being outdoor means experiencing and rediscovering our longstanding connection to nature as human beings. When the planet and humanity is at risk caused by business, consumption and ignorance – we cannot close our eyes. And here, OutDoor by ISPO can play a vital role, says Scholze:

“As an international event with huge impact on the outdoor mindset, it is our duty to realize and accept these challenges. It is because of this logic that we have integrated sustainability as a cornerstone in our concept for OutDoor by ISPO right from the beginning.”

From insights to action

An important step is of course to look at the environmental impact of the trade show itself. The team behind OutDoor by ISPO has developed a new Code of conduct. This includes a call to action in the form of pledges to different stakeholders, like show organizers, exhibitors, visitors, booth builders, caterers and suppliers. One goal is to make the trade show climate positive, and many of the stakeholders have already made their own pledges. The mid and long term agenda is also set, with a clear vision including goals and a general roadmap to develop fact-based solutions on emissions, water and waste management. These goals include measurements and transparent monitoring. “As an international platform for the industry, we must live up to our responsibility and lead by example. That’s why we developed our Code of Conduct and – together with our partners – already have implement quite a few concrete measures during the ISPO show itself. It marks the starting point on the way to reach our vision of a sustainable and socially responsible outdoor industry,” says Hefter.

CHALLENGE TO EXHIBITORS ■ Use less material, provide proper plans for carpet, electricity, lighting. ■ Use regional food suppliers and offer less but higher quality. ■ Use climate-neutral travel options, e.g. through offsetting for staff travel. ■ Bring your own mug or bottle – valid for all exhibitor staff members. ■ Avoid offering single-use plastic bottled drinks during the show, as well as single-use plastic food or drink items on the stand such as cups, glasses, cutlery, crockery, food wraps, straws, stirrers, single portions of milk, sugar, sweets etc. ■ Use eco-friendly cleaning products. ■ Use fewer marketing materials/ giveaways, but if needed use ecofriendly options. Avoid printing. ■ Reuse booth structure, donate if not needed. ■ Donate usable items like products, office products etc. More info: about-outdoor-by-ispo/sustainableguidelines

OutDoor by ISPO Jun 30-July 3, 2019. suston – 23

Help us eliminate

36.5 million single-use bottles.


Shake the Habit: Bring Your Own! For them to make any sense, reusables require that you actually use them. Again and again and again.


e need to make people shake the habit and start using reusable products in their everyday life,” says Calill Odqvist Jagusch, CEO and co-­founder of Light My Fire, a Swedish company based in Malmö, and with production in Västervik a few hours north. The first time she herself brought the company’s foldable plastic cup into a famous coffee chain to buy a cappuccino to go, she felt a bit silly: “‘But then why?’ I asked myself. I should be proud, because this is not only about changing my own patterns, but also showing others how to do it. Many people have the urge and will to get rid of

disposables, but the issue feels too big. We want to make it simpler and fun!” Besides the cups, Light My Fire has a broad collection of reusables. For instance the ReStraw, made of bioplastics with 76% BonSucre certified sugarcane – a material that most of their products are made of since this year. In a world where over 500 million disposable plastic straws are thrown in the garbage every day, this is a relevant product that provides some food for thought. “Keep the straw in your handbag! Travel with it! It’s about reminding yourself, the next generation and people around you that you can show the way and be part of the change.” Light My Fire also wants to contribute

to a trade show with less single use plastics this summer in Munich. “We invite visitors to come to our booth in the Hangout area, and borrow a plate and Spork to use at the show. Another one of Light My Fire’s ­missions is to provide answers to the various questions surrounding plastic products. What are bio-plastics? Bio-­degradable plastics? What materials can be recycled? On the company’s website, the “Little School of Plastics” provides a quick way to educate customers and support the discussion. OutDoor by ISPO: Hall B6/310 and at the Hangout area FM.FGL/706 OR Summer Market: 42013-UL suston – 25


Ready to


Renting instead of owning is a key theme in discussions on sustainable consumption. At the Swedish ski resort in Åre, Emelie and Magnus Sellberg run Rentaplagg, a European pioneer in the industry. BY MATS NYMAN PHOTO GÖSTA FRIES


entaplagg was founded in 2014, while Emelie Sellberg was still project manager for an events company and Magnus Sellberg had begun to study environmental science after years in the sports industry. In January that year, before opening the store, they attended the ISPO trade show in Munich to find a business partner. “People first thought the idea was completely crazy. No one believed in our business concept,” recalls Emelie Sellberg. Since then, the fashion rental market has gained momentum worldwide. The most recent addition is Urban Outfitters in the US, which launched its rental service, Nuuly. Also in the US is Rent the Runway, the industry giant now worth over USD 1 billion with more than 9 million registered users. Founded in 2009, it focused exclusively on bridal and formal wear from famous designers. In the fall of 2017 the company shifted gears to casual wear, offering both rental of individual garments and a subscription service, including a subscription plan with an unlimited number of outfits and swaps. Developments in the outdoor industry have been considerably more modest but have recently started to gain speed. So far, the projects mainly involve hardware. For example, REI in the US has offered a growing range of equipment rentals since last year. US companies like Coozie and Outdoors Geek also offer a wide range of tents, sleeping bags and other hardware. The same trend can be seen in Europe, albeit on a smaller scale. Vaude rents equipment online and through its stores in Germany. Sweden’s largest retail chain, Naturkompaniet, offers tent rentals at all stores. However, rental operations at the major players

26 – suston

are still modest compared with the two-person company from Åre, Sweden’s largest and most renowned ski resort. “When we started, we worked constantly, with the mindset that someone else would soon enter the arena, so we had to hurry. But that still hasn’t happened after five years,” says Emelie Sellberg.

Demand outpacing supply?

Customers in Sweden are ready, at least in theory. Over the past year the Swedish Trade Federation has noted a clear change in attitude among consumers regarding renting instead of buying. In 2017, ten percent stated in their annual sustainability survey that they would rent more in the coming year than in the previous year. One year later the figure was 24 percent. Maria Sandow is administrative director of the Swedish Trade Federation STIL, an organization for Swedish fashion retailers. She says these figures are a clear sign of a change in attitude among consumers. But she believes that how much retailers dare to believe in and market a rental service is also important. “Do rentals compete with sales, or complement them? Does in-store marketing focus on rentals, or on buying products?”

Tradition of rentals at ski resorts

The idea for Rentaplagg was born while waiting for the ski lift in Åre as Emelie and Magnus Sellberg observed the variety of styles among skiers, from exclusive ski outfits to ill-fitting clothing. “We found it strange that people could rent skis and boots for their ski vacation, but not apparel. We also discussed the environmental aspects,” says Emelie Sellberg. They entered a business concept contest,


suston – 27


Remind you of your closet? Be honest now. We were taught to share as kids – rental is just the adult version.

which brought them to the attention of a Swedish business incubator specializing in innovation, after which events unfolded quickly. “We entered the business incubator in September 2013, won the competition in December, started the company in January and opened the store in February,” says Emelie Sellberg. The customers they envisioned were families with children and women aged 30–35, with limited financial resources and an interest in the environment. “But our largest category that first year was middle-aged men renting black ski pants because they had left their own at home,” Emelie Sellberg continues with a laugh. Today, Rentaplagg rents out clothing and gear for all types of mountain activities, all year round. The customer base has broadened and collaborations with conference arrangers and event companies have become an important component of the business, even beyond Åre. They now send equipment packages to all of Sweden, Denmark and Finland.

Business models under development

Their business concept is based on the sustainability of a sharing economy, in which everyone does not necessarily have to own everything, and where quality takes priority over a throwaway 28 – suston

culture. On the apparel side, Rentaplagg works closely with the brands Lundhags, Maloja and Woolpower, which own the garments and receive a commission on the rentals. Emelie and Magnus hope the business model will also motivate companies to manufacture more durable products. “Ideally, manufacturers should consider making products appropriate for renting during the design process. Garments should be durable and easy to repair, recycle or reuse when they wear out,” says Magnus Sellberg. One challenge for the rental business is that retail business systems are sales-based. New systems are needed to log the number of times a garment has been rented, its condition, etc. Moreover, the rental business is labor-intensive. The number of hours it takes to clean garments must be placed in relation to the cost of sewing new ones in low-cost countries. In addition, garments wear out rapidly when washed after each use, which negatively impacts the environment. But Magnus Sellberg believes that the greatest challenge lies in convincing people to change their habits. “It would be great if more actors entered the field, since that would generate more buzz about renting. Few Swedes even know that they can rent apparel and equipment for skiing and outdoor recreation.”



By Land and by Sea Home to pristine lake-speckled forests and a vast archipelago containing some 8,000 islands, West Sweden is the natural focal point for the adventurous and sustainable adventure tourism.


his September, the annual Adventure Travel World Summit (ATWS) will convene in Gothenburg, Sweden, where the industry will gather to talk shop and get inspired. But in this business, people tend to get fidgety if they have to sit still too long. Fortunately, West Sweden’s incredible smorgasbord of adventure eco-tourism is close at hand, for summit delegates and visitors alike. With its rich history and epic beauty, there’s also no shortage of fantastic hiking trails in West Sweden. Some trails follow the coastline, others jump from island to island via ferry, and others still meander the forests and cultural landscapes of the interior. Using its unique lakeside hotel as a starting point, the local operator Upperud 9:9 offers visitors unique mountain biking and treks along a portion of the Pilgrim Trail, a heritage site-studded path that continues all the way from Dalsland to Nidaros Cathedral in Trondheim, Norway.

A labyrinth of ocean passages between the islands which, aside from the occasional idyllic fishing village, are largely uninhabited: the west coast of Sweden is a kayaker’s wet dream. And several topnotch local operators are more than eager to share this gem. One such operator is Balanspunkten, who wants to impart its philosophy of kayaking as communing with nature and invites you to experience the open ocean horizons and narrow protected passages between the pink granite crags of Grundsund and Skaftö. The Swede's affinity to the sea cannot be understated, and here, seafood reigns supreme. Those with adventurous appetites can find an unforgettable treat with Catxalot’s seaweed safari. After learning to identify, sustainably harvest and prepare different edible species of seaweed, a lunch is served in a rustic harbor storehouse including – surprise! Seaweed! By land and by sea. By boots, bike, kayak and more – the wilder sides of West Sweden await.

MORE ACTIVITY EXAMPLES Lagunen – paddle and cycle in Kosterhavet National Park. Evertrek – trekking on the islands of Marstrand and Dyrön. Dalslands Aktiviteter – horseback riding with locally sourced cuisine in Dalsland. Outdoor Support – cycle around historic Lake Åsunden. Kajaktiv – cycle and paddle ”the world's sweatiest art tour”. Navens Outdoor – hiking and biking around Läckö Castle and Lake Vänern. suston – 29

Closing-the-Loop by 2030: Mission Possible The crucial technologies needed for a closed-loop textile industry have been available for a long time. Instead of each one of us taking individual steps, we should now join forces to establish a goal for the future and set a reverse plan in motion.


e should actually be proud. Only a few years ago, the term “sustainability” was more or less viewed by the textile industry as an annoying foreign word uttered by a few fanatics. Today, this term is widely viewed as a key aspect of the future. Hardly a week goes by without one of the major brands 30 – suston

admitting its responsibility and announcing the next milestone toward the goal of sustainability in the form of a voluntary commitment. But we also have to confess that this issue was well overdue. While other industries have at least taken steps to work on the most obvious performance indicators in order to make continuous

improvements, until recently our industry has simply ignored the urgent need for significantly more sustainable behavior. For years now, information such as electronic device power consumption or vehicle fuel consumption has served as an important and transparent purchase decision parameter. In contrast, key environmental indicators tied to manufactur-


Quick implementation of attractive and high performance apparel using a “design-to-circularity” approach – in fact only a question of willpower!

ing processes in the clothing industry barely register on a strategic radar, and are often not available in any detail.

It will take a joint effort

However, being late in the game has its advantages since a wide range of technologies that we need have matured and can now be rapidly integrated. As a result, committing to use recycled synthetics to produce new polyester fibers has nothing to do with an extensive development effort, rather it merely requires an adequate management decision. The corresponding supply chain has been in place for a long time. And as the requirements grow it will provide the corresponding quantities at affordable costs provided we collectively demand it. It’s thus time to band together to send a signal and establish the concrete objective: the creation of a fully closed textile loop. We have an excellent collection system - at least here in Europe – that still sends a minimum of 25 percent of the collected material to incinerators because it can’t be used. We possess diverse technologies capable of recycling key synthetic fibers such

as polyester. And we have long had the option to develop attractive, high-performance apparel for end customers using a “design-to-circularity” approach. In other words, how quickly we implement a closed-loop economy all boils down to a question of willpower. Sympatex, a pioneer in sustainability, decided to take this step during the 2019 Copenhagen Fashion Summit and raise the bar to new heights. Based on its experience with the wear2wear consortium and collaboration with the French government recycling project FRIVEP, Sympatex is planning in the coming year to offer the first functional laminate made from textiles acquired through a circular economy. By 2024, the company is aiming to manufacture at least 50 percent of its laminates from recycled materials, a goal that it plans to achieve with the help of its most recent investment as a Pioneer Partner Member of Worn Again Technologies, which has begun to implement its patented process for recycling blended cotton/polyester fabrics on an industrial scale. And Sympatex is striving to reach 100 percent circularity with its textiles by 2030.

Commit to close the loop

The time has come for us to view sustainability as more than just something to spice up our otherwise static daily business activities, and instead work together to take the bold step of committing to completely closing the textile loop by 2030. From here, we can then work backwards to flesh out the development details, determine which processes must be coordinated anew and decide which milestones have to be reached and when. This would send an important signal to our supply chain, which could then chart the necessary course. We should put our collective energies to work. In light of the constantly growing scrap heaps caused by over 100 billion new pieces of apparel produced each year, there is no alternative path. And considering this circular path transforms waste back into raw materials, it has the additional benefit of offering enormous financial potential considering the rising prices for raw materials. suston – 31


The most sustainable shoe is the one never produced. But footwear is needed to get outdoors, so then we must make them long-lasting and minimizing negative impact. Over the last five years, this work has led us to change all the materials of the Icebug shoes – uppers, midsoles, outsoles – upgrading to more sustainable options without compromising performance or durability. On top of this, we have taken the UN’s Climate Neutral Now pledge, which means that we measure emissions (and report publicly), reduce what we can, and then offset unavoidable CO2 emissions with a surplus by obtaining CERs. For the year 2018-19 our estimate of CO2 emissions was 3,647 tonnes and we offset 4,755 tonnes CO2 equivalents. Though Icebug was not founded on an environmental activist agenda, our survival instincts tell us that we must take action. We take our mindset towards sustainability work in the outdoor industry from a world we know well, that of long distance trail running, where there is a competitive spirit, but people still help and cheer for each other. We’re more than open to share what we have learned, and let’s compete for who can have the most radical sustainability agenda! Our goal was to become climate positive 2020. It turned out to be easier than we thought, so we got there one year ahead. If we can do it, everybody can. See you at Climate Neutral Now!

Feet are our connection to the Earth. How can we make shoes cleaner, make them last longer and recycle them when they can’t take another step? On the following pages, Suston explores new ways forward for footwear.




Project Clean Run was launched in 2018. Boosted by the ISPO ecosystem, it relies on collaboration and believes in tracing and sharing best practices in the footwear industry, with a focus on trail running. After the completion of its first phase, where is it heading? The key actors fill us in.



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ootwear is dirty and complex,” acknowledges David Ekelund, CEO of the Swedish company Icebug. “We are a small brand, and you need to produce big quantities to make a difference on the market and obtain leverage with suppliers. Open innovation and collaboration is just the best way for us to achieve satisfying results in a limited time frame.” And that is the motivation behind the Clean Run project in a nutshell. “When we made the decision to start the project, we plunged into the unknown. We didn’t know if it would cost 20 cents or 20 euros per shoe, but we just felt that we had to do it,” concludes David Ekelund, whose company recently became the first climate positive brand in the outdoor footwear industry. The first steps were taken together with Joel Svedlund, sustainability advisor at the Swedish research and development center Peak Innovation. The next step was to go international. David Badalec, responsible for all innovation platforms at ISPO, recalls: “We were approached by Icebug and Peak Innovation for this project. The idea was for them to tap into our network and use our platform to reach and connect the right people.”

Open for innovation

The ISPO Innovation platform was launched back in 2014 with the mission to accelerate change. Today, it now boasts 6000 registered users and more than 30 ongoing projects.


Responsible for all innovation platforms at ISPO


“Outdoor brands find it difficult to connect with their customers and people outside of their usual circle of influence. Our role is to bring stakeholders and experts together and create new dynamics,” explains David Badelec. Project Clean Run were then joined by ­Dynafit, with its headquarters in Munich, and the Swiss running shoe company On. Dynafit stands out as being a bigger brand. However, ­Alexander Nehls, its marketing director, argues that ­Dynafit is ­historically considered a winter season ­company. “We want to develop summer offer in a sensible way, and trail running is the ideal way to achieve this.” Nils Altrogge, Innovation engineer at On, sees the project mission as one main reason to join: “We want to initiate, drive and be part of a big necessary industry change in the still conservative footwear industry.”

Insights from runners around Europe


Sustainability advisor at Peak Innovation

As a first step in realizing this goal, Project Clean Run created a consumer survey which was answered by nearly 1800 people. “The survey provided us with precious information about the interest of people in the topic of sustainability, and how to develop a shoe which is performance oriented and sustainable at the same time,” reveals Svedlund. The first results were presented at the ISPO CSR hub in February 2019, and the full report was made available to all the actors of the project. “As On is a data driven company, the evaluative suston – 35


Sustainability XXXXXX is about more than products. Icebug also arranges runner’s groups for women, called Forest Femmes.

approach of phase one suited our philosophy perfectly. Knowing customers’ needs and opinions is crucial to choose the right ‘points of attack’ and build the right strategy for future products,” comments Nils Altrogge. One conclusion from the survey was that shoe care is still a neglected aspect of shoe making, says Svedlund. “People do not receive enough information about it and this reduces the durability of the products. Generally speaking, running shoes are not made to enable easy care.”

From insights to action

Now that the expectations and interest of consumers in the project has been confirmed, it is time for the participants to move to the next level. Phase two of Project Clean Run will commence shortly after summer: “We’ll be doing a technology scan,” explains Svedlund, and continues: “The shoe industry is indeed very closely related to the textile ­industry. However, it faces other challenges with sole and mid-sole materials, glues, etc. The idea is to gather the best available technologies for ­performance footwear and then to assess them independently.” Just like with the first phase, a report will be made available after this crucial stage. “Phase one just confirmed our intuitions. However, from phase two we will tackle technical matters and hopefully find a solution that’s not on the market yet. Doing it together is the smart 36 – suston

way. The results can only be better and benefit everyone,” claims Nehls from Dynafit.

Building a template for future projects


Innovation Engineer at On

ALEXANDER NEHLS Marketing Director at Dynafit

Phase three will then be the prototyping phase tested by customers. Finally, the launch of the eco-conceived, open source running shoe is scheduled for 2021. Are there any obstacles? And should brands be wary of open innovation approaches? “We are designing a methodology and new ways of working together. It takes time as it is the beginning of a new trend. The main questions are: How to collaborate efficiently? What to share?” says Svedlund, who sees that busy schedules and limited resources can slow down the project. “A couple of other brands would make the project easier from a financial point of view.” However, time is not the main issue. “It is necessary to do things right. Moreover, this project is an occasion for us to build a template for future challenges,” explains Badalec from ISPO, who continues: “Open innovation doesn’t mean you are giving away all your secrets. It means accepting input from outsiders. Moreover, we sometimes make the brands anonymous in order for the input to remain objective.” From the initiating brand’s perspective, Ekelund is so far very positive. “It’s important for brands to participate in this kind of open collaboration projects. Everybody will win.”


Walk the Walk The long tradition of craftsmanship and repair on one hand, innovative solutions on the other. Suston asked three leather shoe experts about the road to sustainable footwear. BY GABRIEL ARTHUR

LOVISA LÖNNDÖRR CARLSSON, DESIGNER AT KAVAT, SWEDEN You offer your customers the possibility to drop off their shoes for service, sort of like how we do with cars at regular intervals. What’s the idea behind this? It’s a part of the company philosophy, thinking long-term. Kavat’s shoes last much longer than one season and even become more beautiful over time. If you think long-term, our shoes become both more valuable and more environmentally sustainable. To quote one of my previous employers, the British trend-setter and environmental activist Vivienne Westwood: “Buy less, choose well, make it last.” Offering repairs should really be standard in the shoe industry. Our design facilitates repairs. We choose premium materials and constructions that are possible to repair. The forms are simple and based on functionality and the user’s needs – without compromising between function and style.

GIULIO PICCIN, PRODUCT AND SUSTAINABILITY MANAGER AT AKU Your company has worked a lot with tracing the impact through the whole supply chain. What have you learned through this process?

KARLA PECKETT, CREATIVE DIRECTOR AT SOLE AND RECORK The brands you represent have sustainability at their core. How can others in footwear begin taking their first steps towards sustainability?

The first step is to measure, and this is quite complicated. We went through a certified method, the Environmental Product Declaration (EPD), to define the impact of one of our models: the Bellamont Plus. This gave us important information on the life cycle of a shoe and where the biggest impacts are. We’re now evaluating a system to cover the impact of most of our products, and then have concrete data to define our improvement areas and reduction strategies. The biggest impact within footwear comes from raw materials production. Here, we need an industry effort. If all the industry ask together, we will definitely get a much better result. Costs will be lower, innovation will be faster and circular economy will be closer.

It’s a long road, and involves embracing new technologies, devising innovative formulations, sourcing superior materials, enforcing stringent quality and environmental standards. My advice to smaller brands is to start anywhere, and make green thinking a part of your company culture. Identify one thing that you truly believe in and focus on it. Also, is there another brand that you could collaborate with that has a shared vision? Whether sourcing recycled, sustainable, or ethical materials to replace h ­ armful ones, minimizing your use of single-use plastics, switching to recycled or circular packaging etc. In short: designate a goal, make it your priority, focus on small changes that you can make and monitor each step in the process. suston – 37

STEPPING INTO THE CIRCULAR ECONOMY Soft goods in the outdoor industry has already learned that recycling can be good for business. For footwear, this begins now. BY SEAN THOMPSON PHOTO THOMAS RUTTKE/SOEX

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he numbers at first seem overwhelming: over 20 billion pairs of shoes produced every year. That’s nearly three pairs per person on the planet per year. Yet only a tiny fraction, around 5%, of discarded shoes become recycled. One can only wonder why so many shoes are produced in the first place, but such dismal recycling rates? Benjamin Marias, the Co-Director of AIR Co-op and a consultant for sustainability in the outdoor and textile industry, is encouraged by the recent attention this issue is receiving: “I think this is the first time we ask these kinds of questions. Previously, people would look at performance as the only indicator.” As Benjamin sees things, there are three primary components to the shoe waste problem: the sheer volume, the increasing over-complexity of footwear and the difficulty in identifying and separating the different materials at the point of recycling. Each of these issues requires a shift from all actors involved, including consumers, businesses and designers. When asked what the first group, the consumers, can do to mitigate the problem, Benjamin’s suggestion is simple: “The first thing they can do is to keep their shoes as long as possible. For me, I’d prefer something that performs maybe a little bit less but lasts longer. If you run a lot, for example, after one year you can throw away your shoes. That’s a lot of shoes. Alternatively, I would want shoes I know I can do something with in the end.”

Meeting the Challenge

Recycling success stories like aluminum, PET, wool and paper have been premised on the availability of a homogenous material. In footwear, however, shoes constructed with a single material are a rarity. And herein lies the challenge. For the average shoe, a recycling program would have to consider the textiles, often of mixed types, the foam for padding, the rubber for the soles and for more complex or technical shoes, there can be metals like aluminum. While consumers can influence the volume and the design, once these complex shoes are in circulation, only an equally complex and technical solution can solve the problem. This is where SOEX, its operational subsidiary I:Collect (I:CO), and their shoe recycling plant step in. In 2013, SOEX brought together AIR and the English company In-Cycle to look at solutions for recycling complex footwear. One year later, the first prototype of a machine that could mechanically separate the different materials in shoes was built, able to sort through 100 kg of shoes every day. After five years of development and one

million euros of investment, 2018 saw SOEX and I:CO launch the world’s first plant designed to recycle all types of footwear at an industrial scale. The plant, located in Wolfen, Germany (around 150 km southwest of Berlin), weighs in at 4.2 tons and has the capacity to sort through 1 to 2 tons (roughly equivalent to 2,000 pairs of shoes) of discarded footwear each day.

The Process

Shoes are collected at any one of a number of bins around Germany or through I:CO’s in-store take-back program that is run in conjunction with numerous retailers. Once the materials arrive at the plant, the first step in the process is for the shoes to be processed through a shredder, which cuts the products into smaller pieces. All the materials are then exposed to a metal separator that uses a magnet to pull out all metallic objects. The subsequent waste is then run through the delamination mill, which fractionates the composite materials, meaning that they get divided into smaller parts according to their composition. Next, the air separator divides each of the different categories – rubber, leather, foam, and more – into discrete collections. Finally, a grinder processes all the materials into standardized sizes. The business of the plant is to sell the byproducts that result from the recycling process. Axel Buchholz, CEO of I:CO and SOEX, explains: “The three main applications for the recycled outsole material are new shoe soles, sports grounds and running tracks or playgrounds, and interior design objects like rugs and doormats. Applications for the recycled leather materials are currently under development.”

Once sorted and graded, materials can then re-enter ordinary supply chains.

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Each shift sees two employees sort through up to 2 tons of footwear waste.

Yet ingenuity aside, SOEX and I:CO face other non-technical barriers to widespread adoption of footwear recycling. Buchholz mentions the problem of profitability as one of the primary factors. The process creates components (rubber, foam, leather and other materials) that are more expensive than if one were to buy these materials directly from the market. Here, he suggests a need for systemic change, with action necessary from politicians, businesses and consumers to create incentives for producers of recycled products.

As with so many other numbers that document our collective impact on the planet, the amount of waste that is produced from footwear can seem overwhelming. But consumers can choose to keep and repair their old footwear. Companies and brands can design shoes that are both easier to repair and recycle. And finally, forerunners like AIR, SOEX, and I:CO can act as a backstop, recycling shoes at the end of what has hopefully been a very, very long life.

Looking at Lifecycles

With continued innovations, recycling has an increasingly important role to play, and actors like SOEX and I:CO are key to mitigating the impact of the 95% of shoe waste that ends up in landfills or incinerators. But asked where he thinks the state of recycled footwear will be in the years ahead, Benjamin is quick to recalibrate and focus on the main goal, extending the lifecycle of the product as it is: “Recycling is at the end. It’s the choice of last resort in the circular economic model. So it shouldn’t be considered as the main goal, and that’s something that we forget sometimes.” 40 – suston

WHAT CAN CONSUMERS DO? If you live in Germany, it’s possible to take your retired footwear to one of SOEX’s collection bins for textiles and footwear or to one of I:CO’s many in-store takeback partners. Ben Marias recommends customers to engage with similar initiatives such as Love Your Clothes (UK), La Fibre du Tri (France), MOM’s Organic Market and PlanetAid (US) and TerraCycle (Canada).




choose between DYNEEMA® BONDED LEATHER BY ECCO, which provides strength and tear-resistance for external stability, and ECCO FULLGRAIN LEATHER. Such is ECCO Outdoor’s commitment to this water-saving technology, half of the Autumn/Winter 2020 collection, and then the entire Spring/Summer 2021 collection, will be made with DriTan™ leather.

SPECIAL DRITAN™ PACKAGE FOR AUTUMN/WINTER 2019, MADE USING PIONEERING TECHNOLOGY FROM ECCO LEATHER THAT DRASTICALLY REDUCES WATER CONSUMPTION IN THE TANNING PROCESS. BY SPRING/ SUMMER 2021, THE ENTIRE ECCO OUTDOOR COLLECTION WILL BE CREATED USING DRITAN™ LEATHER For 10,000 years, the global tanning industry thought it was impossible to produce leather without using large amounts of water. But now ECCO Leather has achieved the seemingly impossible with its revolutionary DriTan™ technology. Borne out of a concern for global water scarcity, DriTan™ dramatically reduces the amount of water required to tan hides. When leathers are produced using DriTan™, there is no need for any added water, as it only uses the moisture already present in the hides. As well as being a significant step towards water-free leather production, which promises to transform the global tanning industry, DriTan™ reduces the amount of chemicals used, while lowering the production of wastewater. At the ECCO Leather tannery in the


Netherlands, DriTan™ saves 20 litres of water per hide, amounting to an annual saving of 25 million litres, which is enough to keep 9,000 people hydrated for a year. Using DriTan™ also reduces the annual production of sludge at the tannery, which goes to landfill, by 600 tonnes. For Autumn/Winter 2019, ECCO Outdoor is offering a special DriTan™ package, with a select ECCO EXOSTRIKE and ECCO OMNI-VENT product for men’s and women’s. For Spring/Summer 2020 the new ECCO EXOHIKE will be launch and the entire group will be made using DriTan™ leather. Consumers will be able to

Advanced technologies blend with full outdoor functionality and athletic design in the new ECCO EXOHIKE, which brings lightweight power and performance, as well as a modern and progressive aesthetic. Inside the ribbed midsole is a radical, ultra-light material, PHORENE™, which is the softest and most shock-absorbent P.U the brand has used yet. Among the innovations is a robust outsole, engineered from MICHELIN rubber, with a unique tread design that provides grip, traction and stability on any surface.

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Facts You Should Know About Leather Durable, malleable and attractive – Leather is arguably among the most globally prevalent materials, both historically and today. But it’s credentials in terms of ethics and sustainability are not quite so straight forward. Suston provides a primer on the subject. BY CRISTIANA VOINOV ILLUSTRATION NADIA NORBÖM


gyptian artifacts dating back to 5000 B.C. feature leather in everything from sandals to military equipment to shrouds for burying the dead. Fast forward to today, and leather remains a staple material in the footwear, apparel and upholstery industries, with total exports in 2017 exceeding US$157 billion.

Where does leather come from?

Leather is made from various “hides”, or animal skins, which undergo a “tanning” process that essentially mummifies the skin into a usable form. Generally, hide is retrieved as a by-product of animal farming for food. Cows supply the bulk of hide, while other animals like sheep, goat and crocodiles are used to meet other custom demands. Once the hide is cleaned of meat, fat and hair, it may then be pickled or bleached and finally, tanned. Tanning processes differ according to region and demand. Traditionally, tanners were made from vegetables that contain tannins, the substance that makes your mouth pucker when you take a sip of red wine. Essentially a binding agent, it also keeps leather from turning into a pile of rotting flesh. Once tanned, the leather is dried, lubricated, and dyed before being shaped into the desired form.

Health concerns

In terms of consumer health, research surrounding the long-term effects of exposure to finished leather remain inconclusive. Nevertheless, even if leather isn’t directly harmful for the consumer, it often is to the people making it. Most contemporary tanners are made from chromium salts, which are a combination of chromium (a mineral) and other chemicals. Though chromium is a naturally occurring element, toxic forms of it are produced in industrial activities like leather-making. Exposure to chromium fumes has been clearly linked with reproductive and respiratory problems as well as cancer. Its presence along with other hazardous compounds make tanner especially difficult to recycle or reuse, and poses a significant problem in terms of waste collection. Most leather is made in countries with limited environmental protection standards. As a result, unusable tanner is often dumped into waterways and soil instead of being properly disposed. Tannery workers are especially vulnerable. In India, home to the highest concentration of tanneries, the city of Kanpur treats up to 40 million liters of tannery wastewater per day. It’s estimated that only 20 percent of this actually gets clean.

Environment and animal welfare

As a biproduct of the livestock industry, some may argue that leather is a responsible way to use material that would otherwise go to waste. Unfortunately, it’s not quite so clear-cut. Most leather is sourced from factory farms, where not only is the skin included in the valuation of their products, it’s often the most profitable part. Anything that can’t be sold (as much as 70 percent of the hide) then gets discarded as solid waste. The fact is that the leather industry relies on factory farming, whose business model depends on the leather industry – decoupling the effects of each industry from one another is therefore impossible. Industrial farming is particularly disturbing from an animal rights perspective, whereby most animals live in crammed conditions with no natural light. In order to prevent injury from close contact, they may have their teeth, horns and tails removed. Many are given growth hormones to maximize yield. Things get even more complicated when measuring factory farming’s larger effects on the environment. Animal runoff poses a direct threat to water and soil health through antibiotic exposure, acidification and other processes. Furthermore, the global livestock industry suston – 43


Leather from the BIOBASED Swedish shoemaker Kavat’s repair center. If carefully sourced and properly cared for, leather’s durability and repairability can make for a highly sustainability material choice.

accounts for an estimated 14 percent of total greenhouse gas emissions. Much of this is methane, a gas 23 times more potent than CO2 at warming the planet.

Responsible sourcing

Given the sheer amount of waste generated, managing pollutants is certainly a challenge – though not an insurmountable one. Footwear brands like ECCO and Hanwag have leather supply chains based in Europe, where strict environmental regulations ensure little to no toxic waste enters the environment. Similar facilities can also be found in Asia, which can release water that is even cleaner than that which came in. Aku uses chrome-free “DANI Sustainable Leather, and vegetable-based tanners are available. Furthermore, leather can also be sourced from ecological farms – a sector that has been growing fast due to higher demand from consumers. 44 – suston

Can leather be sustainable?

Leather remains one of the most durable and repairable materials available, with many footwear brands such as Kavat offering customers repair services for their products. And contrary to synthetic alternatives, leather’s appearance improves with age. These traits can result in a product with an exceptionally long useful lifespan, if properly cared for. Thus, any adverse impacts associated with its production can be spread across many years, thereby resulting in a more sustainable product. Experts have argued that small-scale livestock farming plays an integral role to sustainable food systems: Cows, for example, eat feed that is not suitable for humans, and graze on otherwise marginal land. In turn, these animals can sustain entire communities. An ethical practice would involve using all of their parts, hide included.

For those who are ethically opposed to using animal products, avoiding leather is only natural. But should those concerned with sustainability shift to faux leather? Not necessarily. The industry may be benchmarked against its worse practices, but that doesn’t mean all leather is bad. It largely depends on where hide is sourced and how it is then treated to become leather. The Textile Exchange is currently developing a responsible leather standard, which once launched will facilitate brand’s looking for more sustainable and ethical leather. But today, sustainable leather alternatives are largely exceptions to the norm, and conscious brands need to both research and make conscious choices in their supply chain. In the end, such choices will be reflected in the price tag. But given the adverse impacts common to the industry, maybe both brands and consumers will find that it’s a price worth paying?


Rapid(a) Recycling Known for first class outdoor footwear and its bold environmental and social responsibility projects, traditional Italian shoe manufacturer AKU lives up to its reputation with the all new AKU Rapida Air multi-terrain shoe.


hen nature is calling, AKU is listening. Not only has the Italian footwear specialist already concentrated 85 percent of its production in company-owned facilities in Italy, Romania and Serbia and thereby reduced the environmental impact caused by the transport of goods, they also created an EPD report last year. The unique-to-the-industry analysis of the environmental impact of AKU’s premium model Bellamont Plus during its

complete life cycle was made to find out where to improve production. The report’s results show the biggest impact in shoe manufacturing comes from the raw materials, which basically leaves two options to reduce it in the future: “The first is to use very durable materials so that the impact can be distributed over several years. The other option is to select materials that are recycled efficiently. This is realized for example in AKU’s all new Rapida Air,” explains Giulio Piccin, AKU’s Product and CSR Manager.

Don't wait for the weekend Applying the conclusions to the core subject – shoe manufacturing – you receive a more responsible, light and breathable multi-terrain shoe for easy traveling and leisure time activities in nature. Rapida Air uses a knitted textile upper that is partially recycled and protected through a 100 percent recycled toe cap and heel counter. To reduce the shoe’s environmental footprint even further, the Ortholite® Hybrid footbed is additionally made of up to 40 percent recycled materials. Following AKU’s motto “Don’t wait for the weekend,” the Rapida Air encourages people to go out and enjoy nature while simultaneously caring for it. For more information about the brand new Rapida Air, the EPD report and further sustainability projects visit our website or find us at OutDoor by ISPO 2019.

STAGE DISCUSSION: ACT RESPONSIBLY Giulio Piccin about EPD and other stories about AKU’s responsible way to act. Shoe & Trailrunning Village in A5 on Tuesday, June 2nd from 16:00-16:30.

OutDoor by ISPO: Hall A4/502 suston – 45


Friend or Faux: Is Vegan Leather Better? Vegan leather is trending as more and more consumers are putting veganism at the forefront of their personal mission. But is vegan leather an ethical, sustainable alternative – or just plastic in a new wrapping? Rosemir Follas from Vegano Shoes weighs in. BY CRISTIANA VOINOV



CEO of Vegano Shoes. Based in Brazil, Vegano Shoes specializes in lifestyle and technical outdoor footwear made using sustainablysourced, non-animal materials.

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hile the leather industry is booming, it has long been plagued with issues of environmental pollution, human health violations and animal welfare. Cheap hide has become widely available thanks to factory farming and non-transparent supply chains, and the negative impacts are well documented (see “Everything You Need to Know about Leather” on page 42–44). But aside from animal rights activists, leather’s drawbacks have not gone unnoticed by the synthetic leather market, which is predicted to hit US$85 billion by 2025. Enter faux leather. With its relative affordability and availability, faux seems like the right alternative for those wanting to avoid the ethical pitfalls of the factory farm. Faux leathers, however, often come with their own set of environmental issues. As it stands, most faux leather contains polyvinyl chloride (PVC), a petroleum-based plastic that essentially takes forever to decompose and is highly corrosive. Add to this the petroleum industry’s role in climate change, sea and air pollution, and it’s clear PVC-based faux leather is at best an accessory to the oil industry’s environmental degradation. But not all fake leather entails plastic: Some can be made from organic material like cork or pineapple leaves that have been bioengineered to look like leather. Bioplastics, which convert agricultural biomass into usable materials, are another option. In short, while vegan leathers that bypass animals and fossil fuels do exist, they are harder to find and are more expensive – but the same can be said of ethical leather.

Can vegan match leather’s performance?

The Brazilian company Vegano Shoes specializes in vegan leather footwear, and its CEO Rosemir Folhas agrees that the discussion is complex: “We can say that petroleum products are also vegan because they don’t deal with direct exploitation of the animal. However, we know that veganism connects to the idea of sustainability and environmental preservation.” For Rosemir Folhas, ethical vegan leathers do more than just address animal exploitation. They look to bypass the fossil fuel industry altogether. Sustainable options are abundant, and can include bioplastics and upcycled plastics, or natural material like cork or vegetable wax. The biggest challenge of vegan products, according to Folhas, is to create high-performance materials that are soft and resistant. “This process has evolved with the discovery of new technologies and materials. We’ve worked with products as durable or even more durable than leather.” Bioplastics in particular can mimic real leather while being derived in whole or in part renewable bio-sourced materials. These hold the potential to reduce footwear’s reliance on traditional p ­ lastics and cut CO2 emissions. But even bioplastics are not free from critique, as debates relating to land-use and food security as well as crops grown from biodiversity reducing monocultures remain unresolved. Thus, while more sustainable vegan leathers are out there, those hoping to sidestep the ills of traditional leather should be aware that faux leather has a few ethical hurdles of its own.


Gear that is made with higher quality and washed less, will have a longer life and can be recycled and resold.

Built on Water Saving Tech Swedish sustainability leader Polygiene Technology minimizes odor in clothes after wearing, making it possible to skip a wash or two and provide massive water savings.


olygiene recently launched Odor Crunch, a patented Swedish technology that addresses environmental odors not caused by bacteria or fungi that are typically associated with and caused by sweat. Odor Crunch is a non-biocide that does not include silver and is based on silica from Sweden, the main ingredient found in sand. This is a water free process and will continue working for the lifetime of the product. When Odor Crunch is paired with its classic stays fresh technology, Polygiene delivers a combined technology to brands that provide a complete odor control solution from the inside – out. In return, a treated product will not need to be washed as often due to odor issues and the behavorial change of not washing a garment after each use can then be realized.

In today’s consumption-oriented culture, Polygiene is doubling down on the message that sustainability and water savings can and should be both an integral part of product development as well as a key consumer message. Recent data points out that the average consumer buys 60 percent more clothing items a year and keeps them about half as long as 15 years ago. The ability to wear clothing longer and without washing will have a signifcant water and energy savings over the course of a year and increase a product’s life-cycle. With its mantra Wear More. Wash Less, Polygiene is continually expanding. Over 140 top global brands now use their technology, including the recent launch of Capilene Cool tees from Patagonia that uses Polygiene for the entire Capilene range.


Just as we prioritize separating our trash and bringing a reusable bag to the grocery story, making these watersaving practices part of your daily routine can go a long way to minimizing water loss. 1. Spot-clean clothes when possible and launder only when necessary. • Then be sure to run a full wash load. • Avoid tumble drying. • Hang garment to air instead of washing them after every use. 2. Turn off the tap when brushing your teeth or soap your hands. 3. Take a shorter shower (and avoid baths). 4. Harvest rainwater to water the lawn. 5. Install water-efficient faucets and repair any taps that drip.

OutDoor by ISPO: CSR Hub OR Summer Market: 56002/UL suston – 47


Nothing Has ­Changed Since 1891 The Morakniv knife has become one of the most famous symbols of Sweden. Over the years it has evolved from a simple everyday concept to an established brand – and it all started with a sustainable idea.


he journey began in 1891, when Frost-Erik Erson established a timber sled factory and soon realized the need to find a sustainable solution for material waste in order to lower the expenses. It turned out that the solution was close at hand. By this time, the region of Mora already had a 300-year tradition of knife-making, mainly for household use. Frost-Erik saw an opportunity to assemble the left over pieces of wood and steel from the sleigh production and make useful utility knives. The idea was simple yet brilliant, and ever since then the knife made in Mora has gone from being just a local factory knife to the world-renown knife brand Morakniv. In fact, a Morakniv is still to this day made in Mora, Sweden, just as it was a century ago. Zero waste With a continuous drive to ensure that material is used efficiently, Morakniv has always been working towards the goal of zero waste in the manufacturing process. Traditionally, every single piece of material used in the process of making the knives has found a use, a concept that

gives birth to new innovative earth­friendly ideas as well as products ideas. Morakniv is manufacturing knives that will practically last a lifetime, constantly contributing to a cleaner earth by minimizing the environmental impact in both short and long term. The outcome can be seen in the way Morakniv is making its way through new markets around the world, offering high standard knives for affordable prices. Just as it should be. 128 years of development Morakniv has been part of the Swedish handicraft tradition for more than a cen-

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tury. The knives are made in the ­factory in Mora, Sweden, by knife makers who have inherited generations of professional knowledge. Each knife is manufactured to the highest standards, in close collaboration with demanding users, and will last for a lifetime. It holds those cherished memories of childhood adventures and hopes of memories still to be made. That’s how Morakniv becomes a part of you. Yesterday, today and tomorrow.

OutDoor by ISPO: Hall B6/212

Please DO touch the animals. Experience the world’s most amazing animals in one app. WWF TOGETHER – the new free app from World Wildlife Fund. Download it today.


Sometimes, it just takes a little help to make today’s dreamer into tomorrow’s outdoor enthusiast.

Reconnect by Foot Since the start in 2005, Fjällräven Classic has brought thousands of people into the great outdoors – first in Sweden, later in Denmark, Colorado and Hong Kong. Soon, many more can follow.


n Sweden’s far north, vast areas of wilderness stretch for thousands of square kilometers. To hike here is to wander grand vistas framed by glacier-covered peaks and studded with sparkling lakes. It was in these landscapes the ideas for Fjällräven products arose, from the need for durable and reliable equipment capable of withstanding long periods in rugged terrain. It was also here that the first Fjällräven Classic was held in 2005, an event that brought together 152 people to hike the 50 – suston

110 kilometers on the Kungsleden trail between Nikkaluokta and Abisko. Fjällräven experts assisted the ­participants with tips on what to pack (and what not to pack), how to dress for unpredictable weather, how to avoid sore feet and generally how to prepare for an unforgettable experience. Along the way, they offered practical help and ­mental support, laying the foundation for a hiking community that has since been exported to other parts of the world.

Four new locations ahead

Today, over 2 000 participants join every summer. Fjällräven Classic has now become the perfect gateway to outdoor life for those who dream of hiking and camping in the wild – but who are not yet ready to do it on their own. Also outside Sweden, with the event’s expansion into Denmark in 2014, and then to the US in 2016. In 2017, Fjällräven Classic took place in four different locations around the world when Sweden, Denmark and the US were joined by Hong Kong.


Fjällräven Classic is gaining new footholds across the globe. Here, in the hills surrounding Hong Kong.

At this year’s OutDoor by ISPO, four new locations will be presented. “All locations are chosen for their beautiful scenery and for having a thriving trekking culture with lots of great trails,” says Fjällräven’s event manager Andreas Cederlund. “With adding new destinations and exporting the successful concept of Fjällräven Classic Sweden to even more countries, we want to give more people, from other parts of the world, the chance to experience a unique long-distance trekking event.”

Freedom to roam responsibly

Events like Fjällräven Classic and the winter adventure Fjällräven Polar are part of the brand’s strategy of shifting toward experiences, and not only be a producer of equipment and garments. For Fjällräven, the events are also a way to educate and help people reconnect to nature. Christiane Dolva, Sustainability Manager at Fjällräven, explains: “I would say that our events belong to the core of our sustainability mission.

We take the end users by the hand, show them how to get comfortable in the wild, and to pay respect to both nature and wildlife. Also, to leave the basecamp in better shape than you found it!” Christiane Dolva believes that this aspect is often missing in discussions around sustainability. “We know that people feel better by being in the great outdoors. And I strongly believe that you are more willing to take care and act responsibly if you have a closer relation to nature. Fjällräven Classic is a way for us to spread this message.” Fjällräven offers an environmental handbook for all its events. Here, it lists requirements of what to buy, how to choose transportation methods, how to collect waste, that all participants should be equipped with garbage bags, and more. All carbon that Fjällräven Classic emits is reported and compensated. “We also cooperate with organizations such as Keep Sweden Clean (Håll Sverige Rent) and Leave No Trace in the U.S., and through our event they can receive a platform to reach out with their message.”

FJÄLLRÄVEN CLASSIC Sweden Distance: 110 km Denmark Distance: 75 km USA, Colorado Distance: 48 km China, Hong Kong Distance: 49 km Four new locations will be announced on Sunday June 30th from 6 pm CET, at the Fjällräven “Trekkers Inn” in the outside area of OutDoor by ISPO. Online the new destinations will be revealed on July 1.

OutDoor by ISPO: Hall B6/202 OR Summer Market: 39105-UL suston – 51


Ask the Retailers The retailer’s role in the outdoor industry’s efforts toward sustainability is crucial. Store managers and their staff need to navigate through the jungle of definitions, standards and occasional greenwashing, while at the same time answer questions from customers who are becoming more and more aware.

In collaboration with the European Outdoor Group, Suston Magazine reached out to outdoor retailers through in-depth interviews and an online survey. Over 120 respondents from 13 countries shared their sustainability insights, strengths and knowledge gaps.








35 25

30 25


Brand store



15 10

10 5

+ 00 1 0


1 0


0 –5 0








rs ta ff



Bu ye r

Retailer chain store



Independet store

Se ni


St or e



r ag e m St en or t e M an ag er





… of the respondents have a sustainability policy. 52 – suston

▶ Austria and Switzerland 7% ▶ Benelux 31% ▶ Scandinavia 20% ▶ France and Italy 7% ▶ Germany 22% ▶ UK 9%

“The group of people buying sustainable goods is extremely heterogeneous! What they are asking for is mostly mainstream, driven by media. Usually customers are not familiar with the details, but are satisfied if the salesperson defines the product as sustainable. The customer relies on our advice.” CSR Manager at retailer chain





We asked respondents to rate their knowledge of commonly discussed sustainability themes and materials.



The Higg Brand & Retail Module is often regarded as the industry tool that will make comparable, transparent and fact based sustainable choices possible - but nine out of ten respondents know ”little” to ”nothing” about it.

Merino wool


Synthetic Bioplastics/ fillings Biosynthetics


Recycled materials





Organic cotton

Per- and polyfluorinated chemicals (PFCs)

Chemical management and standards (Ex. Bluesign)


Product CO2 footprints

Consumeroriented labels (Ex. Responsible Down Standard)


While 70% of small to medium retailers include sustainability in their staff training and 76% have a sustainability policy, the largest retailers respond with just 11% and 55% respectively.


Compared to top management, staff is three times more likely to say consumer’s ask often about sustainability.

… of the largest retailers train staff in sustainability.

Fair trade

The HIGG Index

“People are still not enough aware of all the harm that the industry is doing. They think everything is within safe regulations, but forget that 90% is produced in the Far East, where there are (almost) no regulations at all ...” Store owner, Belgium suston – 53


About the brands Retailers are the link between the consumer and the brand – we asked the respondents to weigh in on brand sustainability. With our magazin e, website, newsletter and so cial media, Suston covers 4 o ut of 5 most preferred wa ys of getting information .







60 Not at all Sometimes

Very much











d yg oo




Ve r



r Po o

w sle t I re nd ter gu us by la rly try e-m up Ma ail da ga Pr te zin in d e te w s eb d B F i ra m l s m ite nd at t In eria cli uto du l f nic ria or st s a ls ry w or t st tra k de sh ore o sh ow ps e se tc m So in cia ars lm ed ia

0 Regularly




Many respondents request comparable facts and one in three rate brand sustainability communication as basic.


Compared to physical retailers, e-commerce retailers are 30% less likely to have a sustainability policy. Also, they are 57% more likely to respond that a brand’s sustainability profile influences their buying decisions ”sometimes” or ”not at all”. 54 – suston

Say brand sustainability influences buying choices.

“Its hard to compare the information on the original websites, almost every brand seems to be responsible in terms of sustainability, but to see the facts is another matter.” Store Manager, Switzerland


About the consumers Ultimately, it’s the consumer that will have the last say on how far the industry goes in terms of sustainability – what are retailers hearing from them?

Fair trade

Consumer oriented labels (like RDS and RWS)

CO2 footprints from products


Chemical mana­gement and standards (Ex. Bluesign and Oeko-Tex)

Per- and polyfluorinated chemicals (PFCs) %

* Graph data represents aggregate average result of all respondents.







More sustainable materials (Ex. organic cotton, recycled polyester etc.)







50 40

40 30

30 20








Slightly increased

Grown very much



Retailer competence is relatively harmonized with consumer interest in most cases – for better and for worse – with both scoring low on CO2 footprints, for example. When new questions arise, the answers might be lagging.


An overwhelming majority (94%) claim consumer demand for sustainable products has grown in the last two years.

Believe that customers are willing to pay more for “green” products.



Very often

“Industry has to lead the way and educate the consumers.” Floor staff, UK

suston – 55



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Is retail on its way to take the lead over brands? Northern Europe’s largest brand sustainability study seems to indicate so. Naturkompaniet’s CEO Henrik Hoffman explains the success. BY GABRIEL ARTHUR


he business-to-consumer study Sustainable Brand Index has been performed since 2011. This year, 50,000 consumers in five countries – Sweden, Finland, Norway, Denmark and the Netherlands – have been interviewed about their views on the environmental performance and social responsibility of over a thousand brands. The results are presented as an overall rating per country and are also divided into categories. In both Sweden and Finland, an outdoor retailer is winner in the clothing category. “We have actually attained a good ranking both in total and in our category since 2013,” shares Naturkompaniet’s CEO Henrik Hoffman. “But this was the first time we ranked highest in our segment, and we also arrived at an honorable eleventh place on the total list.” Henrik Hoffman is also CEO for the parent company Frilufts Retail Europe, which includes Naturkompaniet’s Finnish equivalent Partioaitta – also winning its category and coming in tenth place in total. “We established Naturkompaniet’s and Partioaitta’s sustainability strategy in 2013–2014, and have worked systematically with the issues since then, but actually much earlier as well.”

ability can be an alternative way to reach the customers. In the Sustainable Brand Index, questions like the connection between price and sustainability are also covered. When looking at the willingness to pay 10 percent more for a sustainable lunch option, 37% of the Swedes in the survey claimed they are willing to do so. And 24% said they were willing to pay 25% or more for this choice. On the Swedish total list, Fjällräven comes in 15th place and Haglöfs in 22nd. “We don’t see it as though we want to be better than the outdoor brands – this is a journey we make together. But it’s important that the brands understand our situation, for example by making it easier for us to assess how they actually work with sustainability. Many brands can become much better at providing us with good, transparent information.

The fashion labels end up further down the list, such as H&M in 141st place. Why do you think outdoor ranks so high in general, in the consumer’s eyes?

“I believe it has to do with the connection between nature and sustainability. It’s easier for us to end up at the top of mind with the consumers when it comes to these issues. Fast fashion has a much longer road to go here.”

Communication is an important part of the ­success, via its own channels like its own c­ ustomer magazine, social media, the store’s signage, events and more. But Henrik Hoffman underscores that good communication is not enough: “You also need to do things, that’s why it’s important with a good strategy. The customers like us because they see that we take concrete steps in the right direction, whether it be our own environmental labels, offering recycling and repairs or our co-labs with select brands, where we highlight products that have a strong sustainability profile.” Naturkompaniet has decided to not join the price race in e-commerce and is frugal with ­discounts and sales. Here, focusing on sustain-

Occupation: CEO Frilufts Retail Europe, Naturkompaniet (Sweden) and Globetrotter (German). Age: 40 Residence: Örnsköldsvik, Sweden/Hamburg, Germany


A systematic approach


suston – 57



"Outdoor Futures” is a think tank of sustainability managers and experts, working on a vision that could mean a total make-over for the outdoor industry. It seems that their timing is just right. BY GABRIEL ARTHUR PHOTO MAREN KRINGS

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An intense workshop at the Monviso Institute in Italy is the kick-off for the project.

Sustainability managers and invited experts with a focus on the future. What disruptive changes lie ahead of the outdoor industry?

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bout a hundred post-it notes cover the wooden walls of our meeting room, along with A4 and A3 sheets of paper and colorful small stickers. These handwritten texts address everything from visions, solutions and challenges to collaborations and knowledge banks. Are the answers to the questions that we’ve been wrestling with for the past two days there, in the myriad of notes? Are there patterns linking the ideas? Hidden pitfalls? The scene is reminiscent of a detective movie, in which a group of police post their theories and suspicions on the walls but have somehow lost the overall picture. At this point, no one knows how the movie will end. The energy and enthusiasm in our group has been sky high. But as the work session draws to a close, the level of creativity begins to falter. Foreheads begin to wrinkle, and some participants radiate frustration. Half the group has now been tasked with compiling a first draft for a long-term sustainable vision for the European outdoor industry. Where do we want to go over the next few years? One of the premises for the workshop: continuing on the current trajectory is not an option. The other half tries to define what we think should be covered by the concept “Net Positive.”

How can the outdoor industry become a force that gives more than it takes, from nature and the communities in which we work and play? After the workshop, the proposals will be fused into a road map that large portions of the industry in Europe should want to follow, toward completely new and common goals. It is not entirely surprising that the mood is a bit solemn ...

An Institute with a View

The vision group – to which I belong – gathers outdoors for the session. We’re meeting at the Monviso Institute, located on a south-facing slope 1,480 meters above sea level in the Italian Alps south of Turin. In 2015, the founder, sustainability scientist Tobias Luthe (whom we wrote about in Suston no. 1 2019), purchased an abandoned mountain farm here, with six dilapidated stone buildings and a spring-fed freshwater well. Since then work has been underway to convert the farm into a prototype for sustainable innovations. For example: the wooden walls of the new main building have been joined together by wooden screws, yet the house is still so tight that it needs no central heating. A few kilometers below us is the mountain village of Ostana. The Po River meanders along the valley floor, and continues on its route to Venice.


On the other side of the valley a steep forested mountainside rises, where beautiful banks of fog drift upward through the woods. Although we are here in late May, the weather has mainly been cloudy and cold. Now, occasional rifts form in the clouds, revealing the lower snowcapped portions of one of the most iconic peaks in the Alps – Monte Viso, or Monviso as the local people call it. The 3,850-meter high pinnacle soars far above its neighbors. The peak is a landmark dating back to antiquity and is even mentioned in Dante’s Inferno. As our group outlines our embryo for a vision, however, our gazes remain focused on our notebooks, completely ignoring Monte Viso and the beautiful Po valley below. Instead, my thoughts wander to the US company Interface, the world’s largest designer and maker of carpet tile. In retrospect, I can’t help but feel that some of the answers to our ruminations were right there, hidden in the mist. But they could also actually be found in the flooring company, Interface.

From uphill to downhill?

“As head of sustainability, you should never take defeat personally,” says Peter Hollenstein with a smile, as we traveled in our rental car two days earlier, heading for the Monviso Institute.

It was Hollenstein’s idea to form the working group that is now about to meet. He is Senior Corporate Responsibility Manager at Mammut, the largest outdoor brand in Switzerland. “Mammut has taken many steps in the right direction in recent years. But I’ve still been frustrated. In some areas we can only make progress through cooperation with other companies. That’s why two years ago I started to ask my colleagues at other companies if we could cooperate on a more long-term basis – and received an extremely positive response.” Collaboration related to sustainability in the outdoor industry is nothing new. Examples include development of microfiber knowledge, standards for responsible down and wool sourcing, chemical management, the HIGG Index and more. “But many of these working groups are re-­ active, not pro-active. We also need something more strategic and visionary,” says Hollenstein. Seated next to him is Melanie Kuntnawitz, Head of Vendor Control at Jack Wolfskin, Germany’s leading outdoor brand. Her company has worked systematically with sustainability since 2007, but like Mammut, has kept a fairly low profile to the outside world. And like Hollenstein, Kuntnawitz wants to take a long-term approach – together with others. “We must fundamentally rethink our industry.”

Peter Hollenstein, Senior Corporate Responsibility Manager at Mammut, sees the need for more collaborations – also on the hemp field.

suston – 61

Sometimes innovation means looking back. Hemp fibers have been used for durable, functional clothing for ages. Is it time for a comeback?


But despite a feeling of frustration about the pace, both Hollenstein and Kuntnawitz are on the way to the Monviso Institute with a tingling sense of optimism. “The times have started to change. Today, I think top management in our industry wants to join the journey,” says Kuntnawitz.

A new industry vision

The workshop is a reflection of this change in attitude. Hollenstein began his reconnaissance with people he believed might be interested on both the personal and professional level. Rebecca Johansson, R&D Manager at Helly Hansen, one of Scandinavia’s largest outdoor companies, was quick to come on board. So too were Pamela Ravasio, Head of CSR & Sustainability at European Outdoor Group (EOG) at the time, and sustainability expert Joel Svedlund, who is active in several international collaborations in the outdoor industry. “We wanted to create a fairly informal work group, where we could set high goals and look far ahead,” says Hollenstein. Before the ISPO Munich 2019 trade show, the group had grown to around fifteen members, including both brand representatives and external experts. The group got together for the first time in one of the meeting rooms at the convention center – and received an unexpected visit. Arne Strate, the new General Secretary at the EOG, arrived with good news. The timing for what the group wanted to achieve was perfect, he shared. In the days prior to the ISPO fair, the EOG held its Annual Assembly. A new board of directors had been elected, including several prominent names within sustainability. The EOG’s new vision was presented to the members: a three-pillared vision of 1) “Doing business right”, 2) environmental protection and 3) attracting and helping Europeans to adopt a more active outdoor lifestyle. In other words: top management within the European outdoor industry was ready for a change. Hollenstein relates: “Our group was prepared to devote considerable energy to convince the EOG that we had a good idea. But Arne Strate essentially said ‘go for it!’ and expressed his desire to participate – and that this group would become an EOG sustainability think tank.”

The first seeds are sewn

Following the ISPO meeting, the group has held teleconferences every other week. Representatives for small pioneering companies such as the Italian company Aku, Swedish Icebug and French Picture Organic have joined in. After a voting, the group was named EOG Outdoor Futures. On Sunday, May 26, 14 people are now meeting

adjacent to a meadow at the Monviso Institute. The first task of the workshop is practical, as well as symbolic. Luthe has, along with sustainability experts Melanie Rottmann and Anna Rodewald, prepared a small crop of hemp here since a few years back. We will now clear the weeds and then plant this season’s hemp seeds. Hemp has been cultivated for thousands of years – and may be a suitable material for a new, more sustainable outdoor industry. For example, Luthe has used hemp in his prize-winning backcountry skis under the Grown brand.) Rodewald explains to the group: “Hemp does not require pesticides, herbicides or irrigation, and it also enriches the soil instead of depleting it. Furthermore, it absorbs carbon dioxide and attracts loads of bees!” We are given hoes, rakes and other tools. We dig, pull weeds, and level the ground, after which we carefully plant our seeds, row after row. The work is strenuous and time-consuming, but it is also enjoyable. Then, the two workshop facilitators, Kristoffer Lundholm and Emil Hast from the consulting firm Sustain In Time, arrive. We gather together indoors in front of a makeshift projector screen made from a sheet. “Thank you for the 45 pages of background material you guys provided me with… I don’t think I have to show the scare slides, right?” asks Lundholm rhetorically. Tacitly understood: no one in this room needs to see photos of starving polar bears to be convinced of the crisis in nature.

Back casting from a successful future

Next follows a workshop divided into an evening session on Sunday, a ten-hour session on Monday and a closing half-day on Tuesday. Lundholm, who heads the workshop, has worked using similar procedures for over ten years. It is obvious that he usually must first sell his message about why change is necessary. Here the roles are almost reversed. The group patiently waits for Lundholm to finish talking about how a company or an industry can become “Future Fit” and how the “back casting” method works. The aftermath of each such presentation can be likened to the release of a group of hunting dogs who have been pulling and tearing at their leashes and are now finally allowed to run free. The workshop purchase is not just about a better world – it is also about better business. One topic that is frequently brought up concerns the increasing competition from the fashion and the sports industry. These industries, with far greater resources available, give high priority to sustainability and are very vocal about it. What happens if the fashion giants discover


Arne Strate EOG

Benjamin Marias Air

Florian Palluel Picture

Gabriel Arthur Suston

Giulio Piccin Aku

Joel Svedlund

Peak Innovation

Karla Magruder Fabrikology

Kjersti Kviseth 2025 Design

Melanie Kuntnawitz

Jack Wolfskin

Pamela Ravasio Hohenstein (from July 2019.)

Peter Hollenstein Mammut

Rebecca Johansson

Helly Hansen

Tansy Fall WTIN


David Ekelund Icebug

Jane Turnbull EOG

suston – 63

The consultant Benjamin Marias takes a break from his day job, helping Salomon to define and implement their new sustainability strategy. Rebecca Johansson, R&D Manager at Helly Hansen, has spent many evenings and weekends preparing the workshop in Italy.

sustainable innovations that can be scaled up to meet their volume? What happens if Nike or Adidas develop functional, inexpensive shells that receive higher ratings than those of the outdoor companies listed in the HIGG Index? This discussion can also be viewed from the opposite side: if the outdoor industry becomes a true pioneer, then perhaps informed customers who currently shop in the fashion and sports stores may start gravitating toward the outdoor retailers instead? On the same day that we arrive at Monviso, the EU election is being held, where a green wave is sweeping over northern and western Europe. Two days earlier a Global Strike for the Future was organized in over 1,400 cities across 110 nations. With the textile industry rated as one of the most polluting in the world, this movement hardly views the outdoor industry as one of the good guys. And many participants in this new green wave belong to an urban, well-educated middle class that enjoys outdoor activities.

They already climbed one mountain

One of the presentations is about pioneering companies that have also succeeded in being profitable. Among such companies, the flooring company Interface, with net sales of USD $1.18 billion last year, garners the greatest interest. 64 – suston

As early as 1997, Interface CEO Ray Anderson presented his vision, which is still bolder than that of many of today’s companies. “If we’re successful, we’ll spend the rest of our days harvesting yester-year’s carpets and other petrochemically derived products, and recycling them into new materials, and converting sunlight into energy, with zero scrap going to the landfill and zero emissions into the ecosystem. And we’ll be doing very well by doing good.” The company then formulated a road map that can be likened to conquering a high peak, with different pitches along the way. The peak is called Mission Zero and was to be reached by 2020. There is just one caveat – the progress of the company was faster than planned. “Interface realized that they needed to visualize an even higher peak beyond the first one,” Kristoffer Lundholm explains. Interface calls its new expedition “Climate Take Back”, in which they commit to running their business in a way that creates a climate fit for life, while calling on others to do the same. As we listen to the presentation, it is almost somewhat embarrassing. Here we are in an industry that has equipped alpine expeditions to climb peaks all over the world. But while Interface conquers mountains in sustainability, at this point we are still wandering in the foothills.


Forward to the roots

On the last day of the workshop we walk through the rooms, searching for favorites among all the proposals and ideas. “We need comparable KPIs to create positive competition.” “People pay us to regenerate nature and make the world a better place.” “We can pool our resources, such as a centralized research and standardization center.” “Our factories should mimic the forests, cleaning CO2 from the air.” Looking at the collection of top ideas, Johansson from Helly Hansen nods approvingly. “The results from the workshop can definitely be integrated into our company’s new sustain­ ability strategy.” When the time comes to formulate the draft for a common vision, into which the concept Net Positive must be incorporated, the task at hand seems almost overwhelming. So many ideas, so little time. Our two groups each make their presentations, and our sheets of paper now cover the very last wall. Applause and brief thank you speeches follow. During the summer, the group will then continue to work and try to recruit more interested parties. The next step is to present the vision and the road map at the European Outdoor Summit at the end of September. Should the group dare to choose the steeper, more courageous route, I am sure large segments

of the outdoor community will also applaud. But will top management do the same? After the adjournment, the participants hurry home to their offices in cities all over Europe. I am fortunate enough to spend two extra days at the Monviso Institute and have time for a great hike. The intensity of the workshop slowly fades away, overshadowed by the scents of raindrenched wildflowers and foliage. Then the clouds break up to reveal Monte Viso in all its majesty. I marvel over the steep North East Ascent route, which was used to summit the peak already in 1881. ‘So many outdoor brands were born from courage, perseverance and innovation,’ are my thoughts, as I view the mountain. ‘God forbid a flooring company beat them to the top of the summit!’

The Monviso Institute was founded by the sustainability scientist Tobias Luthe, who also has constructed large parts of it with his own hands.

EOG OUTDOOR FUTURES A new think tank hosted by the European Outdoor Group, working with a vision and a road map for a net positive future for the outdoor industry in Europe. Guidelines on how to join, voting processes and more will be presented before the European Outdoor Summit 2019. Peter Hollenstein, Rebecca Johansson, suston – 65

3 QUESTIONS TO SCOTT The Single Use Plastics project by EOG was presented at ISPO in February. What has happened since?

Since ISPO, the project has gone through an extensive amount of research and divergent thinking. We have spent time measuring our plastics and mapping how our poly bags and shrink wrap move, from the product manufacturer all the way down to retailers, consumers, and into the waste stream. We have been speaking with entrepreneurs, academics, NGO’s, external industries, new product developers, recyclers, plastic manufacturers and more.


What are the next steps on the road map?

Now, the myriad of ideas have naturally formed themes, structures, and insights. Our next steps are to take the top-tier solution sets and begin trialing and testing them to measure impact and minimize costs. We will set up relationships and finalize decisions this summer. Testing, measuring, and iterating will take us through to the end of 2019.

Why is this an important topic for the outdoor industry?

I would love to say because it’s good for the environment, but this topic is also important because our end users care, it has increasing media attention, and legislation is moving much quicker than anticipated. The good news is that there is a large group of highly-committed and capable organizations extending a hand to both peers and competitors alike to join us in realizing a solution. Scott Nelson Project Manager at Single Use Plastics by EOG.





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June 30–July 3, 2019, Messe München Secure your ticket now at:

#OutDoorByISPO 68 – suston

Meet You At the Hub! How do leading outdoor companies do business in a responsible way? OutDoor by ISPO will dedicate a separate area to this question in Hall B6: the CSR Hub. Here, experts provide insights into the industry's latest sustainability projects and products. CIERA RIEDEL, CO-FOUNDER OF GREENROOM VOICE Your team hosts the daily Transparency Tour at Greenroom Voice. What’s it about?

Our showcase will focus on the much discussed subject of bio-based materials and biodegradability of products. We give a compact overview and better understanding about the represented brands and their activities. Experts from various backgrounds in science, material and product development will be ready to exchange knowledge. Each day during the tour, selected brands and organizations will also present their posters.

FRANK LOHSE, CO-FOUNDER OF BRANDS FOR GOOD You started in 2012 – has the interest for social responsibility grown since then?

In so many ways – Yes! From our point of view, many companies now see social responsibility as one of the core areas in their further development. They have definitely recognized its added value at all levels, whether with end consumers, their own employees or in their production. And we at Brands For Good are sure that this is still just the beginning, there is still a lot of potential for development in this area.

KIM SCHOLZE, COMMUNITY MANAGER OUTDOOR AT OUTDOOR BY ISPO You are one of the initiators of the CSR Hub – what are the ideas behind it?

Yes, this will be the fourth edition of the CSR Hub. When we launched it in 2017, the idea was to ­create a space where stakeholders, influencers, experts, sustainability managers and others can ­connect, get inspired and share knowledge. The CSR Hub has expanded a lot since the start and the atmosphere has become more and more vibrant, which I think reflect the rising of awareness for these topics within the outdoor industry.

GABRIEL ARTHUR, EDITOR-IN-CHIEF, SUSTON MAGAZINE What will happen during the Suston Breakfast called Organic Collaborations?

Amazingly smart and passionate sustainability people will meet up and connect over an organic breakfast! There is a great need for more agile and committed collaborations within the outdoor community, to make things happen faster. And I think all good collaborations are based on good ­relations and trust. We will present some on-going projects on stage, which hopefully will inspire more people to start working together.

suston – 69


Sustainability Events

at OR Summer Market 2019 Meet the experts, join the discussions and learn the latest in outdoor industry sustainability! TUESDAY, JUNE 18 10:00 am–11:00 am

Climate Neutral: It’s time for all brands to act The climate is warming, it’s our fault, and the time for action is now. Join moderator Alex Honnold and Climate Neutral co-founders Peter Dering and Jonathan Cedar for a frank discussion on the type of pragmatic, measurable action all brands can and should take.

3:30 pm–4:30 pm

Developing a Sustainable Hemp Fiber Supply Chain in the United States Outdoor Brands can be an instrumental partner in developing the U.S. Hemp supply chain. In order to raise awareness, this panel discussion with leading experts can help lay the foundation for creating a “Sustainable Domestic Hemp Fiber Supply Chain”..

Location: THE CAMP


12:00 pm–1:30 pm

3:30 pm–4:30 pm

OIA Industry Lunch Join OIA and Camber for a discussion of the work being done by many different participants in the outdoor industry who share the end goal of making the industry more diverse, equitable and inclusive.


Five Quick Wins to Kick-Start Your Sustainability Strategy Come listen to recent attendees from OIA’s new Sustainability Boot Camp workshops as they discuss the simple steps of creating a sustainability strategy and quick wins that will get you ahead of the curve.


Plastic Pollution: We Are the Problem and the Solution 4ocean is an ocean cleanup company actively removing trash from the ocean and coastlines while inspiring and educating individuals to work together for cleaner oceans, one pound at a time. We will be discussing marine debris as a global issue, why it’s important to everyone, and what you can do to help.

Location: THE CAMP 6:00 pm–7:30 pm

Outdoor Retailer Inspiration Awards The Outdoor Retailer Inspiration Awards celebrate champions of the outdoor community who inspire and encourage others to enjoy, participate in and support outdoor recreation. Join to see this year’s winners.


WEDNESDAY, JUNE 19 7:00 am–9:00 am

Conservation Alliance Breakfast Celebrating the Conservation Alliance’s 30th anniversary, executive director John Sterling’s reflects on its accomplishments, and turns our attention to what the future has in store for The Conservation Alliance.


OIA Industry Lunch It’s not just about doing the right thing; doing business the sustainable way is imperative. Learn why every outdoor brand CEO should care about sustainability.


Clicks for Conservation The Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership is bringing Facebook and Instagram to Outdoor Retailer for an interactive presentation on social media best practices. Whether you’re snapping images of the Grand Canyon or streaming a product release on Facebook live, this workshop is for you.


2:00 pm–3:00 pm

Skin in the Game in an Era of Global Change We can all have “skin in the game”, a commitment to take risks through what we do that parallel the gains for which we strive, such as financial security, adventure and health. To spark discussion, the panelists will each share insights into global change and risk-taking as we commit time to global change science, water protection, and conserving public lands.


Plastic Pollution: We Are the Problem and the Solution. 4ocean is an ocean cleanup company actively removing trash from the ocean and coastlines while inspiring and educating individuals to work together for cleaner oceans, one pound at a time. We will be discussing marine debris as a global issue, why it’s important to everyone, and what you can do to help.

Location: THE CAMP

THURSDAY, JUNE 20 10:00 am–11:00 am

Impact-friendly Adventure How can emerging brands leave a lighter footprint when it comes to creating environmentally responsible products for outdoor adventures? We’ll hear from certified B-Corps about how recreation impacts climate and the places we love to explore.

Location: RANGER STATION 1:30 pm–2:30 pm

Access: Opening Up the Lands We Love According to a recent report from onX and TRCP, almost 10 million acres of public land are inaccessible by regular Americans. The panel will focus on solutions and what actions we can take, especially with respect to the recently reauthorized LWCF.


SUSTON: More Than a Magazine Suston publishes three print magazines per year, with the next issue scheduled ahead of Outdoor Retailer Winter Market in Denver and European Outdoor Summit in Interlaken.   But you don’t have to wait until then to collect more news, knowhow and inspiration about sustainability. Visit our editorial website, sign up for our monthly newsletter or follow us on social media – where we regularly post both feature stories and shorter news updates.   We are also looking out for pioneering outdoor brands and retailers to become partners in this project. Is your company working systematically towards sustainability? Do you have interesting news or stories that you want to communicate to the outdoor community? Do you want to help bridge the sustainability information gap? Just get in touch!



NEXT ISSUE: HIGG IN FOCUS The sustainability tool that everybody’s heard of but still knows little about.


Sustainability Events at OutDoor

by ISPO 2019

9:00 am–10:00 am

See you there!

Suston Breakfast – Organic Collaborations A get-together over a breakfast in the CSR Hub, where collaborations will be discussed both on stage and around the café tables. Hosted by Suston Magazine.

Location: B6, BOOTH B6.20 11:00 am–12:00 pm

Wool – Climate change and effects on Wool production Secretary General of the IWTO, Dalena White, takes a hard look at the realities of climate change and what it means for the wool.

Location: ROOM B41 11.30 am–12.30 pm

Outdoor for body and soul Petra Thaller from Outdoor against Cancer and Dr. Thorsten Schulz from TUM present the benefits of being out in the great outdoors from a medical perspective. In German.

Location: B6, BOOTH B6.20 11.00 am–14.00 pm

Adventure Connect Adventure travel – a responsible way to discover the wild?

Location: ENTRANCE EAST, B6 70 – suston

14:00 pm–15:00 pm

Wool Facts Behind the Figures Textile Exchange’s Hanna Denes dives deeper into LCA in relation specifically to wool and then focus further on how to manage the risks and make the most of the opportunities, using the RWS as an example of a tool with which to achieve this. Location: ROOM B41

15:00 pm–17:00 pm

Wool Welfare Roundtable Members of the wool supply chain who are leading the way in best practice in areas such as wool welfare, sustainable production and CSR will talk about how they are doing business right and answer questions on responsibly sourced wool. Location: ROOM B41

Project presentation: EOG RMB Single Use Plastics A keynote about the collaboration project between European outdoor retailers and brands, adressing single use plastics – and how to get rid of them.

Location: B6, BOOTH B6.20

WEDNESDAY, JULY 3 11:00 am – 12:00pm

Meet the experts, join the discussions and learn the latest in outdoor industry sustainability!


15:00 pm–16:00pm

TUESDAY, JULY 2 12:00 pm–14:00 pm

Designing products and services that deliver for people & planet Dr. Katie Beverley from the PDR Ecodesign Centre considers how embedding user-centred design and lifecycle thinking into the design process can help outdoor brands to identify more environmentally friendly products and services that meet the needs of users.

Location: ROOM B41 13.00 pm–14.00pm

Adidas x Parley Tim Janaway presents the Parley project, where every piece is made of plastic trash collected from remote beaches and coastal communities.

Location: B6, BOOTH B6.20 14:00 pm–15:00 pm

Microfibers: The evolving journey of understanding A topic that has moved from ‘emerging’ to ‘high profile’ in a short period of time. Strategic Director Sophie Mather will share current understanding through the lens of The Microfibre Consortium.

Location: ROOM B41

Innovation, Sustainability and Digitalization Technology and smart solutions are often perceived as the opposite of the human and natural, and that should not be so. Both the outdoor gear and the adventure tourism industries need to consider combining efforts to think about how smart technology can be steered toward doing good in two directions: technology with a human face and technology for better management of the negative impacts on the natural environment.

Location: B6, BOOTH B6.20

EVERY DAY 9:00 am– 6:00pm

EOCA Fundraising Sale Pick up some great gear and make a donation – 100% of proceeds will go into conservation.

Location: HALL B6 10:00 am

Trade Show Code of Conduct A daily presentation with insights on the new Code of Conduct for OutDoor by ISPO.

Location: B6, BOOTH B6.20 11:00 am– 12:00 pm

Transparency Tour Greenroom Voice presents solutions and products around the much discussed subject of bio-based materials and biodegradability of products.


What’s on your bottle? You might not think about the paint on your water bottles. But we do. Our Klean Coat™ is a chip resistant, durable finish that we believe elevates the standards around what is truly safe and clean for water bottle finishes. Not all powder coats are created equal. Learn more at

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Suston Issue #2 2019