The Sustainability Channel in association withLBB

Experience Agency The Bait Shoppe Pledges to Become Carbon Neutral by 2021

Marketing & PR
San Francisco, USA
Experiential shop partners with Wren to meet ambitious goals, creating a path for industry’s sustainable future

Marking a new era for an industry rethinking its role in preserving the environment, experiential standout The Bait Shoppe is announcing a remarkable new pledge to become one of the world’s first carbon neutral agencies by 2021. Affecting everything from its creative departments to its in-house fabrication capabilities, this new effort represents the agency’s commitment to addressing climate change while providing a necessary roadmap for other agencies to follow.

This recent announcement comes during a time of great cultural change, with people demanding more responsible practices from brands and their partners. “I think that we as a society are late to the conversation about climate change,” explains The Bait Shoppe president and founder Evan Starkman. “More importantly, we are also learning how late we are in acting to address our growing climate change problem. Whether as individuals or collectively as an agency, environmental impact is one of the things that should be more and more discussed. Ultimately, our goal as an agency is to participate, educate and even lead conversations that embrace carbon neutrality.”

To meet its goals, The Bait Shoppe is partnering with Wren, a company that builds tools and services that help businesses and individuals act against climate change. For the agency, Wren will help integrate various new processes and benchmarks for resource conservation, food rescue, carbon capture, and landfill diversion, as well as water and energy conservation.

“There are many great tools and organisations out there that calculate waste and help companies or individuals offset it with donations,” continues Evan. “Instead, we partnered with Wren to not only help us develop tools to truly understand our carbon waste but to build incredible sustainable offset projects. Their projects are trackable and completely transparent, which we love. Through Wren we are able to be accountable to ourselves, our clients and our world.”

Part of the process is not only offsetting environmental cost but rethinking how experiences are created, including whether designs of spaces or experiences be modular and reusable, or if a client can re-use built items or re-purpose them for future activities. The Bait Shoppe will also use local vendors - supporting local business while also ensuring that the carbon footprint of an event doesn't multiply with vendor travel or shipping. Additionally, any food or beverages will be donated post-event or composted.

“Technology also helps drive innovative ways to consider offsetting carbon impact,” says Evan. “For example, if printed materials are meant to be used, we have to wonder if AR can replace them instead?”

While Bait Shoppe’s new initiative is a good step forward, Evan does acknowledge that there’s still a lot of work to be done. “Brands, like agencies, aren't fully aware of the carbon footprint of experiential activities, and even when they are, they aren't entirely sure how to offset that damage,” he says. “There has been a rapid rise in consumer awareness and demand for products to become more sustainable, so as consumer education grows, so will the demand for sustainable activities and practices from the companies that make those products. As an agency, our ideas need to be culturally connected and act for the betterment of the world. This is about more than helping our brand clients be culturally relevant to their consumers. We believe that we need to work towards creating experiences with a positive impact and this is just the first step.”

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