PopSockets Introduces Plant-Based PopGrip, Special Line to Benefit AAPI Youth
In 2019, PopSockets started thinking about how it could reduce its carbon footprint. One of the initial ideas the company kicked around was a compostable product. After its research showed that a compostable product would produce methane gas, which the company viewed as more harmful than the original plastic PopGrip, it turned to a plant-based plastic instead.
Yesterday, the company debuted the PopGrip Plant, which is made from 35% plant-based materials, including corn starch, canola oil and castor beans.
“At PopSockets we are committed to a sustainable future,” PopSockets CEO David Barnett said in a press release. “We are focused on not only product innovation, but also partnerships that offer short- and long-term solutions for carbon reduction. We expect to continually improve over time, and a key part of our efforts will be an increase in the use of plant-based materials throughout the entire PopSockets product line.”
The PopGrip Plant is set to hit the retail market in September of this year, according to Mariah Wakeling, vice president and creative director for iClick, the exclusive supplier of PopSockets to the promotional products industry. Wakeling added that iClick will bring the PopGrip Plant to the promotional products industry in January 2022.
Over the last year, PopSockets put in place other environmental efforts, such as increasing the use of recycled and sustainably forested paperboard packaging to 99%, recycling more than 55,000 lb. of products and packaging, and reducing shipping emissions by 66%.
The promo industry overall has embraced more eco-friendly alternatives for products, like reusable straws, recycled paper products, apparel that requires fewer resources to manufacture, and more. Take a stroll around any promotional products trade show floor, and you'll likely see a product that displays its past life as a single-use water bottle.
And rather than just finding ways to repurpose old products, companies like PopSockets are looking for ways to be more sustainable from the beginning of a product's lifecycle.
"This is just the beginning for PopSockets,” said Jennifer Forman, director of corporate citizenship for PopSockets. “We are continually raising the bar on our operational sustainability objectives to achieve a dramatic reduction in our carbon footprint over the next few years and facilitating activism as a lifestyle."
PopSockets also recently released a special line of PopGrips intended to benefit Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) youth, as anti-Asian prejudice and violence continues in the U.S.
Designed by PopSockets designer Angie Yim, the items include messages like “Racism is a virus,” “Facts not Fear” and “#Standup4AAPIYouth.”
Thank you @PopSockets for standing up for the AAPI community!
— Beyond Differences (@BeyondDiff) February 28, 2021
“We were watching this horrific violence, and we decided we had to do something,” Forman told CBS 4 in Denver.
Through the month of April, 100% of sales from the specially designed PopGrips will go to the nonprofit Beyond Differences and its #StandUp4AAPIYouth program, which works to combat marginalization and racial bias among children in schools.