all image credits: Sergio Carratala
It is nice to see that Sinnamon, the organisers behind the yearly music festivals Daydream and Summercase in Barcelona, are keeping up the green efforts even without Radiohead asking them to do so. Like for the Daydream festival, Summercase, in collaboration with Intermon Oxfam, are motivating festival goers to actively participate in their water bottle recycling scheme by giving out free water bottles for every 5 empty bottles collected. This facilitates recycling and raises awareness about the waste issue.
Other NGOs like Amnesty International spread insights about fair trade products regarding festival merchandising. To save trees, the festival information is available via Bluetooth in the Nokia tent. However, what we liked most at this year’s Summercase festival, apart from the amazing line-up (Sex Pistols, Blondie, Kaiser Chiefs, Kings of Leon, 2MANYDJS, Cornelius…) are the brightly coloured reusable cups that beam from everyone’s hand or hip. Here is how this reusable cup service, provided by the local company Ecofestes, works. You buy your cup for 1€ at the beginning of the night. At the end of the festival you can either return the cup and recover the Euro, or take it home as a souvenir. The cups are personalised with the festival’s logo and bands. The main objective is to reduce the amount of waste produced at such big events. At the end of the festival the cups are returned to the manufacturer for recycling.
Ecofestes’ reusable cup service has triple benefits for public administrations, big organisations as well as smaller, private events. First, it helps to eliminate plastic waste, which is both helpful to the environment and to those who have to clean up after the event. In fact, Fernando from the Summercase group told us that rather than being a direct economic benefit, they chose this product service system more for its environmental benefits than economic reasons. He continues however, that it is true that using this service shows savings when it comes to cleaning up the site during and after the concerts.
Another benefit Ecofestes points out is the extra marketing the event gets by screen-printing the cups with its logo, slogan, line-up or any message they want.
The third benefit Ecofestes explains on their web site is the economical one. They say that the money people spend on the glasses they take home covers the initial cost. Unlike when you have to buy plastic cups, the ‘renting service’ brings money back in. However, doing the maths ourselves with their online budget calculator made us realise that it depends on the quantity you order and the money you charge per renting the glasses.
The cups are made of polypropylene, which makes them machine washable at 160º and at the end of their lives, fully recyclable over and over again. From our trip to the festival we saw that people really liked the cups. Most had them clipped them to their jeans when empty, or raised the cups to their favourite rock band, which turned the site into a sea of bright blue coloured glasses.