Photo Credit: Odpadnesh

Every single advertisement board or banner used at an event sooner or later winds up in the garbage bin, regardless of its eye-catchiness. Thus, a pile of waste is unavoidable at every event. Plastic banners represent a significant portion of the generated waste. They tremendously burden nature. Stefan Hric from Creative Pro Košice acknowledged this problem before the regenerative concept was even born.

Although regeneration is a buzzword these days, we still do little about it. Stefan advocates that we must acknowledge that waste is there before it is even created. Therefore, we must consider the possibilities for preventing, reusing, recycling, improving durability and extending the lifespan of waste. Pair those activities with the local community and disadvantaged groups, such as single mothers, and it would seem we are making genuine progress in managing waste and regeneration.

Stefan’s innovativeness led to the creation of the Dork Bags brand, now a status symbol of Košice. Recently, he evolved the original idea by establishing Odapdnesh, a brand supporting the local community and co-creating sustainable products from waste. Stefan aims to foster positive social and environmental impact with his sustainable initiatives. He sees banners as an abundant and tremendously versatile material source. Moreover, plastic banners are plentiful, whilst their colour diversity prompts unique designs. The plastic found in banners makes them unsustainable, however.

By experimenting and testing numerous techniques, Stefan began transforming leftover plastic banners into an exclusive line of practical products. His bright idea was recognised by a neighbouring company where they print such banners. Two sustainably aware companies thus joined forces. Together, they believe in the flow of materials, banners and ideas. Most importantly, they support recycling waste and finding solutions to reduce unnecessary waste while giving leftover waste at events a new lease on life.

Photo Credit: Odpadnesh

It is refreshing to find innovative products that are, despite being made from advertising boards, high-quality, beautifully designed and worth having. Odpadnesh is a guarantee of quality that advocates care for the environment and sustainable events. We have no doubt other environmentally-aware individuals will soon follow suit. I have become an ambassador of the brand and will proudly use my new Odpadnesh bag.

We visited the modestly sized Odpadnesh manufactury in Košice, where Stefan Hric emphasised: “It is crucial that our work contributes to preserving the environment, supporting local stories and safeguarding workplaces for people from disadvantaged groups. If you no longer require something, you should reuse it.” Stefan encapsulated the essence of the regenerative concept, which has been a hot topic lately, albeit the meetings industry is still unsure how to address it.

Photo Credit: Creative Pro

Spreading awareness in the global meetings industry

His idea could be the solution to sustainable compensation or carbon offset, as giving back to the local community is what counts most. Stefan is thus considering developing a model based on local factories only, which will provide for the needs of a city or region. The manufacturies will also include a kindergarten for children, as most employees are currently single mothers. Stefan’s ideas are a source of inspiration and a valuable lesson in empathic thinking.

The meetings industry has undergone groundbreaking change, but changing clients’ habits remains imperative. Within the meetings industry, we must start systematically and extensively recycling waste to support a circular economy. Before recklessly purchasing promotional products that travel across the seas from China via container ships, we should consider what we can find in our local environment. Stefan’s project also plays a key role in spreading awareness in the global meetings industry. Ultimately, we could learn a lot from our grandparents, who used to recycle everything available.

Photo Credit: Odpadnesh

Find out more about the innovative and sustainable Odpadnesh brand at https://odpadnesh.com/.

About Stefan Hric

Stefan is an experienced manager at CREATIVE PRO with a demonstrated history of working in the marketing and advertising industry. He is the founder of Odpadnesh and is a professional skilled in event management, editing, public speaking, and media relationships.

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