Making Your Trade Show Exhibit Program Eco-Friendly

In order to make an impression on the show floor, you want your trade show display to be eye-catching and memorable but increasing concerns about the impact on the environment should not be discounted. As part of your planning, consider what elements you can incorporate to make your exhibit more eco-friendly.


The largest element of your trade show exhibit is your display.  Making a change to more environmentally friendly materials can have a big impact. Trade show displays are usually constructed with lightweight materials to reduce shipping weight, an eco-friendly element in itself. To take it a step further, displays can be made from recycled or natural and ethically sourced materials instead of traditional fiberboard.


This exhibit, designed and constructed by Loran Associates, incorporates environmentally friendly materials, including bamboo and cork.

The University of Leicester in Britain has created a lightweight material for construction that is even more eco-friendly.  Instead of formaldehyde they are using plant starches, making a material that is both recyclable and biodegradable.

For the lightest weight display, fabric panels are an ideal choice.  Choosing a recycled fabric, such as one made from plastic bottles, and using plant based instead of petroleum based ink make it even greener.  Additionally, the framework can be constructed from recycled aluminum, both lightweight and eco-friendly.

There are also many eco-friendly flooring options made from natural materials like bamboo and cork.  For a softer floor, consider recycled rubber, carpet or vinyl.

Areas that need a studier material can be constructed with products such as PaperStone, a solid surface material made from recycled paper, natural resins and natural pigments. These types of materials are ideal for countertops or table surfaces.



Having a well-lit trade show exhibit is important and the choice of lighting can make a big difference in your energy usage. Instead of traditional or compact fluorescent bulbs, choose LEDs. They use half the energy of the CFC and 1/10 that of a traditional incandescent bulb.  They are also mercury free, unlike CFCs, so they present less of an environmental hazard.

It’s not just the big things like construction materials that should be considered. Making changes in some of the little things can have a big impact.


To ensure your trade show display arrives in good condition, careful packing with ample materials is a must. Often these materials are discarded once unpacked. By setting these materials aside for use when packing the display for the return trip, waste is reduced and materials conserved.


A lot of thought goes into selecting promotional items but the sad truth is that many of them end up getting thrown away. By thinking creatively and doing a little research, items can be found that are not only environmentally conscious, but also so useful or interesting that they will be less likely to end up in the trash.

Eco Incentives, Ltd. offers a unique giveaway that is not only sourced from natural materials but eliminates waste as well. Instead of handing out reams of paper detailing your product information, distribute these usb drives encased in reclaimed wood. They are much to pretty to pitch ensuring that your info remains at hand.


If more traditional giveaways are your style, there are options as well. Pens, mugs, golf tees and other plastic items can be manufactured from corn, a renewable resource, instead of oil. These items are inexpensive and useful.


Promotional items put your name and information in the hands of your prospects but there is another way to disburse information without waste.  Customized lead retrieval software collects information by manual entry or a scan of an attendee’s badge.  Targeted information is immediately e-mailed and a hard copy can be sent if requested.  It will be on the target’s desk before they even get back to their office.  This solution reduces printing and shipping costs and eliminates paper waste.

Even making a few changes in your trade show exhibit program can make a big impact on our environment. Loran Associates has over 20 years of trade show display design and construction experience and has been incorporating green elements into designs for many years. Contact us and we can explore what you can do to make your trade show exhibit environmentally friendly.

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