The Phoenix Suns and Phoenix Mercury have announced a long-term partnership with Footprint, a material science company, that includes naming rights and product integration within the team’s downtown Phoenix arena.
The Footprint Center will host fans for Suns and Mercury games with food served in Footprint’s biodegradable, compostable and recyclable products. The venue will also offer fans educational points about the positive impact of making a switch from single-use plastics in their everyday lives.
The partnership continues an arena transformation that began in 2020 and has included over 8,200 tons of material being diverted from a landfill, 757 tons of plastic and metal being recycled, new LED lighting in all finished spaces, new energy efficient mechanical systems for more fresh air, and reused and recycled materials used throughout the arena.
“We’re thrilled to partner with Footprint to reduce the arena’s dependency on single and short-term use plastics by making Footprint Center a hub for sustainable products and packaging,” Sarver said. “It was important to us to find a partner that could truly make a positive impact in our community and on the planet, and Footprint is a global leader that is also Arizona-based and therefore shares our commitment to the Valley. Integrating Footprint’s plant-based fiber technology into our core business functions will mobilize partners and fans to drive collective and systemic change, in our arena and beyond.”
As part of the partnership, Footprint will bring its food and beverage solutions and a team of dedicated experts to help Footprint Center become carbon-neutral and single-use-plastic free. The first change fans will see will be plates, packaging, utensils, coolers and other single-use plastic items that will be replaced with Footprint’s plant-based technologies. Footprint Center will also feature recycling and compost containers instead of trash cans.
“We believe our partnership with Footprint will put Phoenix on the map for a more sustainable future,” said Suns and Mercury Chief Revenue Officer Dan Costello. “Taking this step will position the Valley at the forefront of the sustainability movement. A local effort to eliminate plastic and become carbon-neutral will set a standard for innovation that can spread through the city and scale throughout the sports and entertainment industry. Sustainable business is good business for our teams, the community and the environment.”