Eliminating PVC in Our Products

Case Study By:
Jennifer Krischer

In 2018 we made a commitment to start eliminating PVC as a main or secondary component in all our products by 2023. PVC (Polyvinyl Chloride) is a fossil-fuel based material which is known to contain toxic additives harmful to both human and environmental health. By eliminating this material, we reduce environmental impacts and support our clients in choosing better materials.


Our industry has been slow at taking action to eliminate PVC. It is widely used in promotional products and for items that need to be clear, like TSA compliant products and bags required for entering a stadium.

This goal required us to engage our suppliers’ help to identify available alternative materials that met key factors such as quality, functionality, and environmental impact. Existing alternatives, like EVA and TPU, are still from virgin petroleum inputs. We needed to ensure we could source these materials with recycled content and be sure the material wouldn’t degrade quickly with normal use.

Analysis and Actions:

By setting a goal to stop using PVC, we initiated a comprehensive client education campaign to highlight the environmental and health concerns associated with PVC, creating additional consumer brand trust.

Simultaneously, we tasked our suppliers to source material options with recycled content and conducted rigorous tests on new materials, including prolonged exposure to sunlight and everyday use. These tests revealed acceptable levels of wear and tear that showed that the performance of EVA and TPU was comparable to the PVC counterpart.

Results, Outcomes and Lessons Learned:

Our commitment to replace PVC and reduce our reliance on virgin petroleum-based materials is based on a desire to improve our environmental impact. When we set the reduction target in 2018, we weren’t sure of its attainability given the nature of our products.

A target makes a difference, however, and since 2018 we have steadily reduced the presence of PVC in our supply chain. In that first year, 26% of our orders were made with PVC, this number reduced to 2% last fiscal year.

Ultimately we hope to minimize the production of clear bags altogether. We are actively advocating for industry changes, encouraging event organizers and regulators to consider transparent mesh bag options as alternatives to traditional clear vinyl. Until then, we are committed to testing and assessing alternative materials to ensure long-term sustainability and product quality. Examples of non-PVC solutions can be seen in our product posts here.