The Exhibit Designers and Producers Association announced the winners of the inaugural Zero Waste Challenge at the annual EDPA Access event in December.  EDPA launched the Zero Waste Challenge to harness its members’ creative energy, recognize innovation and share the best ideas for reducing the industry’s impact on the environment. EDPA challenged members to produce great exhibit projects that improve sustainability by reducing waste, both in the shop and on the show floor.

Winning entries were selected in two different categories. 

For the Small Exhibit Category, up to 400 sq. ft., the winner is Image 4’s project for startup boutique food manufacturer Cucina Aurora. Image 4 looked for sustainable options from the outset, including alternatives to using real stone, timber and glass as design elements. The resulting exhibit fulfilled all of the client’s design requirements for a rustic Tuscan kitchen, and Image 4 was able to deliver the visual impact to their clients at 25% the original carbon footprint.

In Large Exhibit Category, over 400 sq. ft., the winner is Freeman’s The Plumb Club project. Freeman has adopted the 5R’s: Rethink, Reduce, Reuse, Repurpose and Recycle are part of their company culture. They always look for ways to keep materials out of the landfill by finding new ways to repurpose leftover materials. With this project, Freeman looked at the lifecycle of materials and made recycled content and recyclability key criteria for materials in custom rental systems.


Tom Bowman, EDPA’s Sustainable Exhibit Leadership Committee Chair noted, “The inaugural entries showed that EDPA members are moving beyond the granola and wheat grass image of sustainability. In fact, the winners proved that excellent design and smart logistics go hand-in-hand with improving the sustainability of our industry.”

Congratulations to both of these companies and thank you for moving our industry in the right direction.

For more information on EDPA and these award winners, contact Melissa Nemitz at [email protected].