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Patagonia Issues Statement to Utah: Protect Wild Lands, or We Boycott OR

Hours after Outdoor Retailer announced a return to Utah after 4 years of hosting the show in Denver, Patagonia stood firm on its promise again to boycott the outdoor industry’s biggest trade show unless pledges are made to preserve public lands.

When Outdoor Retailer announced its decision to move its biannual trade show to Denver in 2018, many looked to big brands like Patagonia to move the needle.

At the time, the Trump administration was following through on Utah’s push to scale back public lands protections around Bears Ears and Grand Staircase Escalante National Monuments. Patagonia was an early outspoken protester of Utah policymakers who supported shrinking those protections.

As leverage, the brand announced a boycott of Outdoor Retailer as long as it was in Utah or until land protections were restored. Today, Outdoor Retailer announced it was returning to the Beehive State. Patagonia, which attended the show during its stay in Denver, responded.

“Should Utah’s politicians abandon their legal threats seeking once again to roll back protections for Bears Ears and Grand Staircase Escalante National Monuments, Patagonia is glad to return to Outdoor Retailer in Salt Lake City. We are disappointed the owners of Outdoor Retailer are blatantly ignoring the Indigenous Peoples, local activists and outdoor athletes who spent years working to conserve and protect wild lands in Utah by moving the show back to Salt Lake City. Until we hear a firm commitment to protect our national monuments, we remain steadfast in our position and won’t return to the trade show in Utah.” — Patagonia CEO, Ryan Gellert

Other brands, including The North Face, REI, and others, have declared they will boycott a Utah show “as long as its elected officials continue their attacks on national monuments and public lands protections.”

This is a developing story, and we will update it with further information as it becomes available.

Adam Ruggiero

Adam Ruggiero is the Editor In Chief of GearJunkie.

Adam has been covering daily news and writing about cycling, camping, hiking, and gear of all kinds for 15+ years. Prior to that, Adam lived in Hawaii and Puerto Rico, at which time he realized he’d never have a “normal job.” His pastimes — farming, bike racing, and fitness — provided a gateway to all manner of physical challenges and recreation outdoors.

Based in Kansas City, MO, Adam tests as much gear as he can get his hands, feet (and dog) into each and every day. As editor in chief, he works to maintain GearJunkie’s voice, style, and commitment to accurate and expert reporting across every category.