Sep 212014

Picture: Dougal Paterson,

All our hollow wood surfboards are now being glassed with Entropy Super Sap bioresin. This is a first for wood surfboards in South Africa and increases the already sound environmental credentials of the wood boards we produce.

Traditional epoxies mostly use petroleum based materials, but Entropy claims to use “biobased renewable materials sourced as co-products or from waste streams of other industrial processes, such as wood pulp and bio-fuels production”. They claim a 50% minimum reduction in CO2 and greenhouse gas emissions and say that the “green chemistry” eliminates harmful by-products and reduces power and water consumption.

After years of emailing the manufacturer and pleading with them to open up a supply chain to South Africa, we’re pleased to be able to access a more environmentally friendly product given the harmful nature of resins used in surfboard manufacture. But does it really make a difference? I asked someone in the composites industry whether it mattered and his response was that the bio-based additive is a very small percentage of the overall product. The fact is that epoxy resins are hazardous and need to be treated with caution, so this is by no means a product that you’re going to add to your cereal in the morning.

I ran this by a sustainability manager doing a course with me, voicing my doubts as to whether it was worth using, given that it’s also a more expensive option. Sure, he said, but what about the fact that there is now a company supplying a product through which they are trying to offer a ‘greener’ alternative? That’s a major step forward, he argued, and simply by supporting the product it’s encouraging further research and development that will hopefully lead to even more sustainable resins in the future. This building block argument has merit, I believe, and I think I’m making the right choice.

Read more about the environment and wood surfboards here and here.



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