How the events industry can reduce plastic waste

Hollywood Monster’s CEO of sustainable signage solutions, Simon McKenzie, shares his insights.

Exhibitions: time to reduce harmful plastic signages.
Exhibitions: time to reduce harmful plastic signages. Photo Credit: Adobe Stock/Heorshe

Attendees are increasingly demanding more sustainable events as the awareness of plastic waste’s impact on the environment grows.

The UK events industry is known to generate a significant amount of waste each year. According to a 2018 report by Powerful Thinking, the UK festival industry produced around 23,500 tons of waste annually. The report also found that only about a third (32%) of this waste was recycled, while the rest was sent to landfill or incinerated.

Although there are many eco-friendly alternatives to plastic materials and companies are looking to reduce their carbon footprint and grow towards being more environmentally friendly, many are hesitant to commit to these means.

Among those that have ventured into sustainable alternatives is Hollywood Monster’s CEO of sustainable signage solutions, Simon McKenzie. His company organised fully recyclable signages at the 2022 Commonwealth Games.

In March, Vue Cinema in Westfield, London used graphics to advertise and promote the Super Mario Bros film, a commonplace practice in cinemas. These fabric graphics were printed on UFabrik Soft Display Textile, a high performing material that is made from recycled PET plastic waste. Three walls and a section of the ceiling in the corridor leading to screening rooms were dressed in the impactful Super Mario-themed graphics.

Aaron Scott, regional bespoke asset manager at Universal Pictures, said: “This was no small feat. It took a team of four from Hollywood Monster two consecutive nights to fit, working through the night while we were closed for minimal disruption. The result is impactful and offers the film goers an immersive Super Mario experience, something the enthusiastic audiences have been visibly excited about.

“Vue are conscious of the impact on the environment and have made big advances in our energy-saving technologies. We want to reflect this level of responsibility in all our practices, and so we wanted whatever material we chose for this project to be sustainable, as well as high performing.

“It’s an ideal time for the industry to introduce new signage methods and materials, because it's already happening, all around us, in our everyday lives.”

Source: M&IT