The surf industry is in the throes of what you might call a “great awakening.” That is to say, surfers are increasingly aware of how the products they use – wetsuits, surfboards, etc. – to play in nature are simultaneously harmful to it. Polystyrene, polyurethane, and neoprene are just a handful of petroleum-derived inputs that any ocean enthusiast worth his salt will quickly recognize. And activists and consumers alike are in turn demanding accountability from the corporations they patronize for products that are at the very least less harmful to the ocean. At the same time, companies are innovating and seeking to answer that demand – case in point Marko Foam and Arctic Foam’s recently announced partnership that in which Arctic customers will now be able to order any of Marko’s extensive EPS catalog.
Marko Foam and Arctic Foam are two major players making surfboard blanks that have been coming at the sustainability angle from different directions over the years. Marko, a global leader in EPS (that’s expanded polystyrene), has changed the game with their Enviro-Foam blank made with 25% recycled EPS foam. Arctic, meanwhile, together with UCSD developed the world’s first algae-based blank several years ago, and makes PU blanks for top shapers like Jon Pyzel. The recently announced partnership means that shapers previously unable to get Marko Foam – predominantly Hawaii, South and Central America, and Europe – can now order Marko blanks through Arctic.