Outdoor

Eco-Shred: How Arbor Collective Made Snowboards Sustainable

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This is the story of how sustainably manufactured snowboards came about 25 years ago.

“If you care what you do, you can be successful.” It’s a pretty simple statement. But it’s a pretty daunting business model – one that the Arbor Collective get on your way to hug.

This film examines how the founders of Arbor started the company, what first steps they had to take and of course celebrated the 25th anniversary of the brand.

It follows Arbor in its efforts to find a financial footing in the industry. It’s all about all of the tries and mistakes that went into developing the first product and how the brand eventually earned its place as an “innovative and enduring” snowboard brand.

In Arbor’s words, it’s a story about what it takes to make a positive mark on the surf / skate / snow industry.

Arbor Collective: The Beginning

Arbor’s first koa wood snowboard, circa 1995

In 1995 two friends – Bob Carlson and Chris Jensen – started Arbor. Their goal was to make sustainability the guiding principle in the manufacture of their products.

“They would be the first traditional action sports brand to do this and the first to officially commit to donating a portion of sales to environmental protection,” the Arbor team wrote in a press release.

In the mid-1990s, Arbor came out with a line of snowboards made from sustainable wood panels and cores, a reduction in plastic content and a commitment to preserving forests.

“We were like foreigners in our own industry. Different enough to get past the noise of the mid-1990s, but not cool enough to hold on to the industry consolidation at the end of the decade, ”said Carlson, Arbor co-founder.

Over the next month, the brand will be launching special edition boards, films, and more to celebrate 25 years of Arbor.

“Crossing the Grain” is a full-length documentary. The full film will be available in winter 2020-2021.

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