2011 Sustainable Material Umbrellas from Rainkist

8 Jun

The Shield Umbrella from Rainkist

The 2011 Eco Friendly line of umbrellas from Rainkist are made with a sustainable, environmentally friendly fabric derived from recycled plastics. In addition the handles, but not the skeleton or shaft, of these umbrellas are made from 65% shredded wood, which Rainkist expects to decompose within 2-3 weeks after placing into the soil.

Again, I like the idea of a more sustainable umbrella, the use of fabrics from recycled plastic, fabrics whose very nature reduces or at least delays that plastic content ending up in my landfill. However, please can’t we use natural cotton, or even pricey organic cotton canvas for the canopy of a sustainable umbrella. Yes, we would need to deal with the sky high price of cotton, but cotton is biodegradable, and I think a better material for a sustainable umbrella than the non-virgin polyester which is used in most eco umbrellas today.

Also, wood for handles is great, but for umbrellas that do not need to collapse, can’t more manufacturers use wood, even bamboo for shafts and other components. Indeed why is there not a bamboo fabric, bamboo skeleton, bamboo shaft umbrella on the promotional items market? I am sure it comes down to cost, but I would love to see that umbrella.

With my rant out of the way, I do applaud Rainkist  for offering four umbrellas in their ECO Friendly line, and in making sure one of those umbrellas – the ECO25002 – is a golf sized umbrella with a large 64″ arc, and huge imprint area of 10″ x 8″. The ECO25002 is a manual opening umbrella, not a folder, and Rainkit advertises that allows them to make the umbrella with less than 1% total metal components.

Umbrellas are indeed great branding vehicles. They are both useful and practical, and a high quality umbrella will advertise your brand for years as the owner uses the umbrella as part of their daily routine. Indeed all Rainkist umbrellas come with an unconditional lifetime warranty.

For hotels I love the gimmick of printing “follow to” above the hotel’s logo on guest lobby umbrellas. It shows that the hotel in question is not letting their guests get soaked, and helps to brand the hotel with a sense of humour. If it is a golf umbrella, print it with “follow me to the 19th hole” to help advertise a cool drink and nice meal at the end of the game at your own course watering hole.

For more information on Rainkist contact them directly. If you are looking to purchase a sustainable umbrella for your own business contact your local promotional items distributor or email info@proformagreen.com for samples and pricing.

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