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CASE STUDY: How Nikwax Created a Sustainable Trade Show Booth to Lessen its Climate Impact While Simultaneously Saving Money and Labor

February 27, 2020

Media Contact

Kate Ketschek
Revolution House Media

Seattle, WA

For over 40 years, Nikwax has made sustainability and performance a priority. Throughout this ongoing journey, the international brand has hit many significant milestones, including never using PFCs, making safe and effective washes and waterproofings to extend the life of outdoor gear, carbon balancing all of its operations, and in 2020, bottles made from 100% recycled plastic.

In 2019, to support the 100% recycled plastic bottle launch, the Nikwax NA team made the decision to produce a completely recyclable booth made from sustainable products. The entire booth was produced from renewable forest resources and recycled materials. The material used is completely recyclable and produces no chlorofluorocarbons and emits no VOCs during manufacturing. It is Sustainable Forestry Initiative® (SFI) certified and promotes closed loop recycling. It’s baler friendly, renewable and reusable, lessens dependence on petroleum-based resins and decreases landfill waste. The booth was shipped in a recyclable crate, and booth carpet was eliminated.

This exercise, while intended to be a one-time occurrence, made the team deeply consider their impact at trade shows. For the Winter 2020 OR Show, they produced a similar booth, incorporating lessons learned. They continued with the same material but found a local Denver manufacturer. This meant no shipping; money was saved and carbon impact was reduced. They were also able to cut out plastic and foam packaging and padding. The only packaging was two cardboard boxes (recyclable).

What was learned? It’s a balance. While the company is treating the booth as single-use, they believe choosing recycled and recyclable, sustainable products lessens the impact vs. manufacturing a booth that is used for years and updated each year, without the use of sustainable materials. What happens to that booth in the end?

With the 100% recyclable booth, Nikwax saved money on shipping, storage, and set-up. The new booth had less impact on the staff who could set it up and tear it down quickly and easily. Unsustainable products were eliminated and a booth that creates excitement and interest from all who pass by was created.

There’s no perfect answer to the trade show booth. But, with thoughtfulness and creativity, an impactful booth that shares the brand’s message of sustainability through example can be showcased.

About Nikwax
Nikwax was founded in 1977 by Nick Brown, an avid hiker and traveler, who designed his own waterproofing wax to keep his leather hiking boots dry. Today, Nikwax is the trusted global leader in environmentally safe aftercare solutions. Nikwax products extend the performance life of technical clothing, footwear and equipment. Nikwax’s 40+ year commitment to clean chemistry means not using PFCs or aerosols, and not testing on animals. The carbon balanced company’s product line is water-based and biodegradable. All product bottles are made from 100% recycled plastic that can also be recycled. Nikwax North America is a subsidiary of Nikwax Ltd, a UK company. For media inquiries and more information, please contact Kate Ketschek at Revolution House Media,