Gear | Sustainable SUP Brands
Sustainability isn't just a topic for hippies—it's an ever-growing necessity and a practice that outdoor enthusiasts generally embrace. And given the current state of our struggling global environment—temps increasing, glaciers melting, lakes drying up, sea level rising—industries of the outdoor persuasion are obligated to produce with environmentally responsible methods and materials. And many already are. Beyond the brands that donate to environmental charities or support environmental events, there are also brands that ensure every material, down to the packaging, is sourced responsibly. Here are a few sustainable SUP brands that have the right idea on responsible day-to-day operations and production. —Shari Coble
Focusing not only on utilizing sustainable materials in their board-building, but also on following sustainable production practices, Earth SUP lives its mantra: "Deep into Nature." Earth SUP is committed to continuing research and development of materials and procedures that further reduce waste and emissions, which means they're only going to become greener. The brand's EARTH boards feature flax fiber for its strength (similar to fiberglass), durability, and flexibility, as well as the fast-growing Paulownia wood for its light-weight and warp-resistant properties, and, a cork deckpad for shock-absorption abilities. EARTH SUPs also feature minimal fiberglass, while omitting the use of harmful varnishes and paint.
Based out of Haleiwa on Oahu's North Shore, Everpaddle produces standup paddles and standup paddleboards that are not only eco-friendly, but high performance, too. Crafted of reclaimed wood from across Oahu and Big Island, Everpaddle's shaper and owner, Kevin Seid, utilizes koa, mahogany, curly mango, and monkey pod for the brand's standup paddles, and hemp as well as bamboo for their boards. Everpaddle also offers sustainable post-paddle gear like organic cotton totes and soft, bamboo T-shirts.
Sustainable inflatable SUP is practically synonymous with Origin Paddleboards, whose inflatables are currently the only on the market that are constructed of a German material produced in compliance with Europe's REACH regulations. Basically, that means that the inflatables' material is produced responsibly, and, without chemicals that are damaging to human health or the environment. Origin Paddleboards also uses recycled or responsibly sourced materials for packaging, and, even their shipping method is carbon-neutral. Seriously? We're impressed.
Clean and local; those are two aspects that make the Oceanside, California-based SUP company standout in terms of board manufacturing. Designed and produced in Southern California, Bounce SUP's sustainable board line is crafted with Thermal Composite Technology (TCT) and without volatile organic compounds, or, other chemicals. With TCT construction, Bounce SUP isn't just doing better for the planet and its inhabitants, but also for paddlers' wallets because the boards are strong enough to take beatings from running into docks and falling rocks.
For over three decades, BIC Sport has manufactured water sports products—and had an awareness for environmental impact. Awarded the Ecocide Recognition by EuroSIMA, BIC Sport strives to reduce their carbon footprint by implementing programs like their company-wide environmental management system, as well as their partnership with Eveno-Fermeture, which recycles the polyurethane recovered from old surfboards for use in producing shutters and blinds. Some of BIC Sport's gear is entirely recyclable, and, they have a recycling program with surf schools in France to further reduce.
More SUP environmentalism.