Jakob De Proft has written this week’s blog for The Event Tutor. Jakob lives next door to one of Europe’s biggest music festivals, Rock Werchter, in Belgium. The number of tents left behind at this festival each year inspired him to create the most eco-friendly tent ever made. This is Jakob’s blog about the Fling Tent.
The story behind the eco tent
In 2012 I lived near one of the greatest music festivals in the world: Rock Werchter, Belgium. The nearest campsite was only 500 meters away from my home. I was shocked to see what was left behind on the campsite at the end of the festival. I decided to do something about it.
In Europe, people are leaving 3 million tents abandoned at the end of the [bigger] festivals, each year! I do not have figures about the rest of the world.
Our solution was a system of rental tents. We expected that people would be happy to stay in a pre-pitched tent. We designed and patented a close-to-perfect rental tent, which is extremely easy to pitch, fold and maintain for rental companies.
The option to give audiences the opportunity to rent a tent worked (and still works) fine. However, the majority of people still prefer to stay in their own small, and often cheap, tent. We decided to design exactly the tent that a lot of people prefer.
Festival audiences prefer not to think too much about their tent at all. It needs to be cheap, easy to pack and pitch, and as a bonus aesthetically pleasing.
For us on the other hand, we wanted to make the most eco-friendly tent ever made. Which was not an easy task.
Very early on we realized we had to think outside the box. We had to forget everything we knew about tents. The Fling Tent was ready to be born. Made from fabrics that had never been used before in tents.
We wanted the tent to be compostable! Not that it had to decompose during the first use, of course. Festival visitors can use the Fling Tent like any other tent and we don’t want people to leave it behind.
“If it doesn’t add to the user, to the producer, the different other players and to society… stop and restart your work until it does” Jakob De Proft.
Compostable festival tent
To create a compostable tent caused us to dramatically change the design. We had to design a tent with extraordinary qualities. We had to design it in a way that it became extremely pure. No zippers (those are not compostable), no Velcro©, no guy lines, no reflective strips. In fact, our tent was to become extremely functional, leaving behind every unnecessary part.
We had to develop special machines to produce this kind of a tent. Nobody has done it before. We wanted the seams to be very rigid in various weather types, the tent had to be wind resistant, waterproof and still provide enough ventilation for the night.
And we succeeded!
The Fling Tent
Today we are so proud that we can launch the Fling Tent over a Kickstarter project within a few weeks from now. Here are some facts you should know about our Fling Tent:
- 2 person tent
- 1,7 kg
- Tent fabric is made from compostable fabrics
- Poles are from recycled plastics (and not yet compostable)
- The flysheet is always printed in a 4-colour print. We can print anything on it.
Already we have received interest from all over the world. The fact that it can be branded really helps. We don’t consider this tent an end product.
For festival organisers and festival audiences the real focus is on creating a behavior change. People shouldn’t leave their tent behind anymore. That is a different project, which we are working on too.
Interested in Sustainable Event Management? Please visit my website EventTutor.com