As we decided to develop our reacha a few years ago, it was our declared goal to combine our passion for sports with our demand for ecological behavior. Simply spoken: We wanted a smart solution to bring our equipment to the beach, lake, river or mountain with a low carbon footprint.
Due to the modular (and downward compatible) construction principle, the application possibilities of the reacha will increase in the future with new components. We are constantly working to improve the reacha and its accessories. The tool-free assembly reduces the barriers to use, and the adjustability in length and width allows the reacha to adapt to the everyday life of its users. Low-tech solutions, such as the Bike Connector, ensure that the product remains variable and can be used by all users.
Part of our original idea was to give old and unused components a new purpose. Floko built our very first prototype in his basement from an old windsurfing boom, leftover wooden slats and old front wheels from the recycling can of the bike store next door. And so today you can order our reacha DIY without wheels to give old bicycle front wheels a new life.
The first reacha
With our minimal design, we have been able to develop a high quality, durable and versatile trailer using very little material. The use of CAD software (computer-aided design software), 3D printing and rapid prototyping has enabled us to optimize the use of materials in many iterations. This has allowed us to develop a high quality, durable and versatile trailer with reduced use of materials. 80% of the reacha's components come from Europe. This keeps the carbon footprint in transportation low and gives us more impact on the environment and working conditions. The heart of the reacha, the frame is produced just around the corner from us in Upper Bavaria. The final assembly and shipping takes place in Gmund am Tegernsee. We have also decided to ship with DHL Go Green,, climate neutral to further minimize our carbon footprint. In 2022, we were able to reduce the amount of paper by around 30% using customized cardboard boxes . We purchase these boxes around the corner from Bayerische Wellpappen GmbH in Lengries. This way, we keep the delivery routes as short as possible and can ship the reacha in cartons made of recycled paper. We focus on sustainable packaging and work on innovative solutions to reduce the overall waste volume. In the meantime, we also completely avoid plastic in our packaging. The reacha is packaged exclusively in cardboard and we use ecological adhesive tape made of paper and natural rubber. To reduce the carbon footprint of our print products, we also decided to change printers in 2022 and now have all our instructions, postcards and stickers produced by WIRmachenDRUCK GmbH. As a result, we can now confidently enclose instructions made from recycled FSC-certified paper with our reacha. We compensate for unavoidable emissions during printing and shipping, and can therefore offer climate-neutral print products. If you would like to learn more about print and packaging, we recommend this article from our Company News. This season, we succeeded in reducing plastic waste by 90% by exchanging grid boxes with our frame manufacturer on a rotation principle, where our components can be stored and transported without plastic packaging.
The reacha already consists in parts of recycled materials. For example, certain components are produced with carbon fiber-reinforced plastic that originates as waste from German production. Our goal is in the medium and preferably even shorter term to use plastics and aluminum from recyclates and reprocessed aluminum. In the case of textiles, we are looking for solutions to use upcycled technical textiles. In this context, we are always happy to receive tips and links from the community.
Even though we are increasingly selling our products internationally, our base and home remains the region around Munich and south of it. This is where our development team, most of our suppliers, our partners and, most importantly, our customers, testers and users have been based from the very beginning. Think global, act local! Last year, true to this motto, we donated the additional revenue from the temporary reduction of VAT to the local technology and science initiative Fablab Oberland e.V.. 4000€ for the creatives of tomorrow!