Associate Editor

This backpack, designed by Mafia Bags in San Francisco to raise funds for Sustainable Surf raised $17,000 in five days. Photo: Sustainable Surf

The Inertia

The surf industry is a tragicomedy when it comes to sustainability. Surfers, motivated by the enjoyment they get from playing in their natural environment buy products to assist them in that pursuit that undermine the health of the ocean from which they derive their joy in the first place. In recent years, surfers have collectively begun voting with their wallets for higher quality products that are better for the ocean at large.

Sustainable Surf is a non-profit that’s been at the forefront of trying to clean up the surf industry and save it from itself. Their hallmark initiative, the ECOBOARD project, is a way to classify surfboards that utilize some of the most sustainable materials on the market.

Recently, in an effort to raise awareness and funds for their Waste to Waves program, Sustainable Surf partnered with San Francisco-based Mafia Bags to create an ocean-friendly backpack. Five days after their launch on Kickstarter, they reached their $17,000 goal.

The backpack, designed by world-famous designer Yves Béhar is constructed of upcycled boat sails and loaded with useful features, all of the profits of which go directly to Sustainable Surf.


“Being a surfer and being an ocean-lover. I’m very concerned about the state of the ocean. Supporting Sustainable Surf and MAFIA Bags with a functional backpack made of re-used sails is exciting,” said Béhar about the project.

“The Deep Blue Bag isn’t just a bag. Every backer is joining Sustainable Surf’s ocean-health movement, keeping 10 square feet of plastic materials out of the landfill, while directly supporting our Waste to Waves program,” said Michael Stewart, co-founder of Sustainable Surf. “With each bag sold, we’re able to expand our Waste to Waves program globally. Collecting and upcycling more sails, more packaging waste, more used wetsuits and more wine corks – re-imagining waste as a resource and getting plastics out of our oceans.”

The bag is available on Kickstarter for $175 but will retail for $200.


To learn more about Sustainable Surf and Mafia Bags’ Deep Blue Backpack click here.


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