Footprint boosting sustainability efforts through partnership with Phoenix Suns

Apr 18, 2022, 4:35 AM | Updated: 5:29 pm
(KTAR News Photo/Taylor Kinnerup)...
(KTAR News Photo/Taylor Kinnerup)
(KTAR News Photo/Taylor Kinnerup)

PHOENIX — When Footprint entered into a multiyear naming rights deal for the Suns’ arena in downtown Phoenix last summer, the company had more in mind than just being connected with one of the best teams in the NBA.

The Gilbert-based company specializes in materials science with a goal to reduce single-use plastic by using plant-based fiber when designing food packaging.

“We’re trying to keep harmful chemicals away from people’s food and we’re also helping to save the planet by making sure that at the end of life when people are done with whatever it is, that it can either be composted or recycled,” Heather Knox, senior vice president of communications for Footprint, told KTAR News 92.3 FM.

“It makes us feel great when we know we are eliminating plastic in the landfills, plastic in the streams and oceans.”

People may not have been aware of Footprint when it first took over the naming rights during the Suns’ run to the NBA Finals last year, but it’s possible they used some of the company’s products.

Footprint’s customers are mainly businesses, with big food brands like Kraft, McDonald’s, Tyson Foods, Beyond Meat and Annie’s using the company’s products that are both microwave and oven safe.

Footprint Center being at the forefront of people’s minds by having the naming rights of the arena, which also houses the Phoenix Mercury and numerous other events, helps bring the company’s message of sustainability to the general public.

“We thought it was a really unique way to also touch a million people a year who come through the doors of Footprint Center either to watch the Suns or to watch the Mercury or to come to an entertainment event,” Knox said. “It was a real opportunity to expose them to more information about what it means to be sustainable and the Suns have been great partners in that.”

Knox added both the company and the Suns are committed to making the arena the center of sustainability in Phoenix.

“We really want Footprint Center to play that role in the Valley, where it’s really not only sending a message and educating but taking action steps and helping other people take action steps that they can to get rid of single-use plastic.”

The company in the first year of the partnership has been testing products at the arena that could help eliminate the waste problem that is generated at big events.

“The Suns are at the progressive end of trying to take action and to help eliminate single-use plastics and show what that means at Footprint Center by replacing things that people are used to seeing every day in venues like that with these new fiber-based materials from Footprint,” Knox said.

“Over time you’ll start to see new things roll out at Footprint Center that are very unique and new and I think it will give people a whole different perspective on what it means to go to a game and enjoy it and we’re hoping they can also do that sustainably.”

KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Taylor Kinnerup contributed to this report.

Lifetime Windows & Doors

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

Sen. Kyrsten Sinema and other senators speak to the press about a bipartisan infrastructure package...
Kevin Stone

Sen. Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona makes Time list of most influential people for 2022

U.S. Sen. Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona was named to Time magazine’s 2022 list of the world's 100 most influential people.
10 hours ago
(Screenshot via ADOT Webcam)...

Westbound US 60 reopens in Tempe after weekslong repair work

Traffic returned to westbound U.S. 60 in Tempe on Sunday night, after a closure to repair damage caused by a water main break.
10 hours ago
(Screenshot via ADOT Webcam)...

Fatal crash closes Interstate 17 in north Phoenix

One person was killed and others were injured in a multivehicle crash that closed northbound Interstate 17 in Phoenix early Monday.
10 hours ago
(Pexels Photo)...
Taylor Tasler

Public-private partnership in the Valley looking to make grilling a little greener

The summer season usually means firing up the grill for some barbecue and now public and private leaders in Arizona are partnering to figure out how to make grilling better for the environment.
10 hours ago
(Russ Lyon Sotheby’s International Realty Photo)...

Carefree house designed by architect Gerry Jones sells for $3.4M

A Carefree home designed by a well-known architect of the town recently sold for $3.4 million.
10 hours ago
Follow @TaDunham...
Sponsored Content by Arizona Department of Health Services

Update your child’s vaccines before kindergarten

So, your little one starts kindergarten soon. How exciting! You still have a few months before the school year starts, so now’s the time to make sure students-to-be have the vaccines needed to stay safe as they head into a new chapter of life.

Sponsored Articles

Carla Berg, MHS, Deputy Director, Public Health Services, Arizona Department of Health Services

ADHS mobile program brings COVID-19 vaccines and boosters to Arizonans

The Arizona Department of Health Services and partner agencies are providing even more widespread availability by making COVID-19 vaccines available in neighborhoods through trusted community partners.
Dr. Richard Carmona

Have you gotten your booster shot?

Do you remember when you got your last COVID-19 vaccination? If it has been more than five months since you completed your primary vaccination series, it’s time for you to get your booster. You may be eligible even sooner depending which vaccine you received. If you are over the age of 50 and received your […]
(Twitter photo / Coco5)...

Suns star Devin Booker’s all-natural sports drink Coco5 perfect for any activity

Devin Booker is leading the Suns in pursuit of their first NBA championship while also working to provide people proper hydration with Coco5.
Footprint boosting sustainability efforts through partnership with Phoenix Suns