25 January 2010


If I had to use one word to sum up what I saw at the Outdoor Retailer Winter Market this year, it would have to be sustainability.

Many of the booths that I visited were doing something to help the environment. They were either re-introducing existing products in their line that are now made with recycled or sustainable materials, or they were coming out with new, environmentally friendly products.

Products made with PET from recycled water bottles were common. As well as clothing made from bamboo fibers.
Here's a small look at some of the recycled items I saw...

Chico Bags were created with sustainability in mind. Their line has expanded from a simple alternative to the ubiquitous white plastic shopping bag to a messenger bag and a day pack. They also have several bags that are made out of more than 80% recycled material, with fabric made from recycled PET bottles. The folks at their booth were kind enough to give me one of their Messenger rePETe bags to try out. Expect a full review soon.

Teko has a line of running/cycling socks made from 100% recycled PET. They told me that they are just as durable and comfortable as your traditional lycra cycling socks.

Another material that was being recycled and reused in new materials was rubber - as in rubber tubes. Bicycling may be an environmentally friendly alternative to driving, but we aren't completely green. One problem is our tires and tubes. It is considerably cheaper for companies to produce tubes from raw butyl rubber than to recycle used tubes. So, what happens to those tubes? One company, Green Guru creates messenger bags, wallets, and other accesories out of recycled tubes.

These bags are made out of recycled tubes. the top one is made from one truck innertube, the bottom one is made out of 6 mountain bike tubes. They also make bags from recycled billboard and hemp.

Cycle Dog makes leashes and collars for man's best friend from recycled bicycle tubes. Hailing from Portland, The owner combined her love for cycling and her love for her dog and came up with a use for all her discarded tubes.

It always helps to have a cute spokesmodel at your booth to draw the crowds

Their collars also have a "pup top" for opening your favorite frosty beverage.

Many other companies were offering products made from recycled, repurposed, or sustainable materials. I can only imagine that number will increase in the future.

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