New products, brands, celebrity speakers and leaders in green living garnered the attention of approximately 20,000 attendees at this year’s Green Festival®. With a 20% increase in number of tickets sold, it was evident that New Yorkers were anticipating a fabulous event. For two days, attendees shopped, tasted and learned about the latest in sustainability, green brand and fair trade products from today’s leading eco-friendly companies and experts.
Green Festival presented a number of new and expanded offerings at the New York event, due in part to its new partnership with Messe Stuttgart, a leading international tradeshow organizer producing Europe’s largest consumer show on sustainability. The New York show featured more than 200 exhibitors, sponsors, partners and nonprofit allies — the most in the history of the Green Festival New York event. Companies showcased innovative new products in popular categories from organic, non-GMO, gluten and dairy-free food, natural organic body care, health and nutrition, eco-fashion, green kids, sustainable home and garden, green building and smart energy, green investing and media, and Green Festival’s expanding clean transportation category.
This year Green Festival attendees took part in test-drives of Ford’s fuel-efficient vehicles, received discounts for UberX-hybrid rides, signed-up for car-sharing accounts with Zipcar, and entered to win a Porsche Cayenne Hybrid vehicle sponsored by Wyndham® Hotels and Resorts. Attendees arriving by bicycle were given free entrance to the festival through the Clif® Bar’s bicycle valet, and nearly 1,000 local volunteers helped Green Festival divert tons of waste from landfills, making Green Festival a near-zero-waste event. In addition, the program line-up featured pioneering thinkers in the sustainability and green living sector, such as ABC News co-anchor Dan Harris; Amy Goodman, founder and executive producer of Democracy Now!; Jacquie Berger, executive director of JustFood.org; and Rona Berg, editor-in-chief of Organic Spa Magazine.
For the first time ever, Green Festival announced the winners of its inaugural Green Festival Brand Award and Community Award during a special awards presentation on Sunday. Green Festival and festival participants were thrilled to have Nicole Velez, Miss Earth United States as the Brand Award Presenter. Miss Earth, along with Organic Spa Magazine Editor-in-Chief Rona Berg and publisher and editor of Inhabitat Jill Fehrenbacher, were this year's Brand Award Judges. The Green Festival Community Award judging committee included Saundra Thomas, Vice-President of Community Affairs at WABC-TV; Sharon Jaye, Director of Sustainability at NYC Department of Education; and Walter Greene of New York Carib News.
“We are very excited to promote the winners of the Green Festival Brand Award and Community Award, and applaud the extraordinary work being accomplished by two very worthy organizations and their environmentally-sustainable solutions,” said Dr. Corinna Basler, President of Green Festivals, Inc.
The Green Festival Brand Award winner VegVoyages was founded by long-time vegetarians and avid travelers who provide global travel adventures that cater to the needs of vegans and vegetarians. The New York Coalition for Healthy School Food received the very first Green Festival Community Award, and will be the recipient of a $5,000 grant to go towards introducing plant-based foods and nutrition education in schools.
Green Festivals is committed to inspiring and empowering consumers, communities and businesses to work green, play green and live green and is currently gearing up for their second spring event to be held in Washington, D.C. (May 31-June 1).