SustainAbility: Design for a Better World is a special exhibit and educational series designed to inform, promote and recognize “green” activities and initiatives. It will be on view at the New York International Gift Fair (NYIGF), which runs August 13-18 at New York City’s Jacob K. Javits Convention Center.
Now in its fourth year, the juried exhibit features sustainable gift, home and lifestyle products, the Eco Choice Awards recognizing “green” product innovation and a two-part seminar series addressing sustainability and fair trade business practices.
The summer 2011 SustainAbility display, curated by Ilene Shaw of Shaw + Co! Productions, will feature 179 products from 125 companies from around the world. Acceptance criteria included eco-friendly products and production processes, as well as socially responsible, philanthropic or fair-trade oriented business practices. The products vary widely in provenance, design, materials, and functionality. A full SustainAbility participant list, including detailed product descriptions, is available online.
“Products within the realm of ‘green’ now extend beyond the basics – recycled and recyclable materials – to include products created through solar and wind energy manufacturing,” said Shaw. “We also are seeing an increasing number of green products that accessorize and coordinate with high technology products, such as personalized headphones made with alpaca fibers; and a banana leaf iPad case produced in Rwanda through a Fair Trade arrangement.”
During market week, products displayed in the SustainAbility display will vie for the semi-annual Eco Choice Awards, co-sponsored by GREENRetailer. Through open balloting, winners will be named in three categories – “Most Innovative,” “Most Sensitive Use of Materials” and “Most Sellable”.
Two seminars addressing eco-friendly and socially-responsible issues and opportunities also will be presented during NYIGF. “Certification, Standards & Compliance” will be held on Monday, August 15, from 12:00 to 1:30PM. Susan Szenasy of Metropolis magazine and Susan Inglis of the Sustainable Furniture Council will discuss the evolution of green products and business practices, and new developments in certifications, standards and compliance.