Thanks to generous donations to the European Outdoor Conservation Association (EOCA) by its members and the enthusiasm of visitors to the show, conservation is set to receive a well-deserved boost after fundraising at ISPO last week came to over double the amount taken the previous year at the same show.

Hundreds of items were donated to EOCA’s Conservation Fundraiser, held on its stand each day of ISPO, many of which sold out within a number of hours. With donations from 44 of its members, as well as events being held on members’ own stands, the total raised came to €37,500! The 2019 total, in itself a record, was €19,000.

Events held on members’ stands to raise funds for EOCA were many and varied. Breathing life into new products was the Bergans of Norway ReDesign. €450 was raised from the on-stand production of items made from products reaching the end of their usefulness or roll ends of materials. Visitors could select colours, shapes and sizes of their items, and watch them being made before their eyes!

To reduce single-use plastic, Camelbak sold mugs and donated a free cup of coffee to anyone with a reusable, raising €3835 in the process. The scheme was so popular that Camelbak had to send for reinforcements at the end of the first day, having nearly sold their entire stock for the whole show!

KEEN Footwear showcased the smallest show store in the world on its stand, raising €1,500 from sales from the brightly coloured vending machine as well as a further €1,600 through boot sales on the EOCA stand. Ternua continued to sell its packable rucksacks – each made from 10 plastic bottles – which are also being sold at outlets across Germany in order to raise awareness and funds for EOCA. And finally, Schöffel, in partnership with Singtex produced a specific ‘Plastic Free: Mountain to Sea’ men’s and women’s t-shirt to help boost funds for EOCA’s Ocean Initiatives projects which are currently underway.

An additional boost to EOCA was the signing of 4 new members to the association, three of which came during the show itself. International outdoor brand McKINLEY joined the association on 1st January this year. The very first meeting of ISPO saw the signing of Polish hammock, tarps and accessories manufacturer LESOVIK, which was followed swiftly by the joining of outdoor footwear and apparel brand Merrell. The show closed with another new member in the form of German snow and outdoor sports retailer, Sport Conrad. EOCA looks forward to working with these and the 154 other members of the association during 2020 and beyond.

Joint General Manager of EOCA, Tanya Bascombe said, “We are delighted by the success of the show in terms of awareness-raising for EOCA. Messe München donated an enormous stand for our fundraiser to take place, the visibility of which was commented on by a number of visitors; we were asked to take part in a “Brands that do More” panel in the CSR Hub, organised by Nikwax which led to a number of very interesting conversations afterwards; the membership of the association has continued to grow and the generosity and support of all our members has led to enough funds being raised already to support an additional project this year. We are very excited by what the rest of 2020 will bring following such an auspicious start.”

About EOCA

The European Outdoor Conservation Association is an initiative from the European outdoor industry with the objective of protecting the wild areas it cares so passionately about.

Designed to harness the incredible power of the outdoor industry and to raise money to donate to grassroots conservation groups, the European Outdoor Conservation Association is funded by membership and other fundraising activities within the outdoor industry. 100% of membership fees go to the support of projects. Membership is open to anyone that can demonstrate an involvement in the European outdoor industry.

From January 2015, a select group of ‘Sustaining Members’ pledged their support to EOCA by committing to fund the sustainable growth of the organisation with an extra €10,000 per year over and above their annual membership fee. This money is being used to finance the running of the Association and support its sustainable growth, and also enabled a move to 2 funding rounds per year.

The current EOCA Sustaining Members are Pertex, KEEN Footwear, The North Face, Nikwax, ISPO and OutDoor by ISPO (Messe München), and the European Outdoor Group (EOG), which is also the Founder Member of the Association.