The Salzburg Marathon as a role model for the World Athletics Federation in the sustainable organization of running events.
Organic food of regional origin
In 2010, the Salzburg Marathon was the first sporting event in Austria and the first marathon event in the world to receive an official organic certificate. Since then, the event has been organically certified every year by an independent control body. This means that all food (not specifically marked as conventional) offered at the running festival in the city of Mozart comes from environmentally friendly, organic cultivation - primarily from regional production and seasonal availability, in the case of tropical fruits as organic fair trade goods. With the focus on organic nutrition, the running festivals in the city of Mozart focus on the highest quality and represent a great strength of the region. Nowhere else in the European Union is such a high proportion of agricultural land farmed organically.
Anyone who is fit, eats healthily and makes sure they get enough exercise takes on a lot of responsibility for themselves. This role model function often spreads to those around them. “Running automatically involves a complex discussion of nutrition. For a pleasurable movement we need a high-quality fuel. Exactly this - even in organic quality - the participants at the running festival in the city of Mozart have been getting for years," explains organizer Johannes Langer. With the organic focus, the Salzburg Marathon and Bio Austria Salzburg set a strong example for environmental protection and sustainability and demonstrates its roots in the region.
Close partnership with Bio Austria
Bio Austria Salzburg has been actively supporting us on our way as a loyal partner for many years. The organization of over 24,000 Austrian organic farmers sees the production of food in a holistic context. Because organic products are high-quality, healthy food, they protect our livelihoods such as soil, water and climate and preserve the biodiversity of our living space. In the federal state of Salzburg, around 60 % of the agricultural area is already being farmed organically, which is the highest proportion in the EU. “On the one hand, there is of course a very important and obvious connection between organic products, healthy nutrition and sport. On the other hand, we also care about supporting people who are not doing so well. This is an important concern of organic farmers and their way of thinking and attitude does not stop at the pasture fence," emphasizes Managing Director DI Andreas Schwaighofer of Bio Austria Salzburg.
Further focal points of sustainability
Thanks to the targeted commitment of the team around organizer Johannes Langer, the running festival in the city of Mozart has been pursuing an ambitious and constantly evolving ecological concept for years. All employees set an example of environmentally friendly behavior on the event weekend.
Banning aluminum, reducing plastic: Thanks to good cooperation with the partners responsible for providing drinks, all aluminum containers and cans were removed from the event and the use of plastic bottles was reduced enormously. Fresh Salzburg spring water from tanks is offered at the refreshment stations, and electrolyte drinks freshly mixed with powder. At the refreshment stations and at the destination, all participants drink from compostable cups (which naturally decompose within 40 days); in the catering trade, a deposit system ensures a significant reduction in waste. The starter packages are not made of plastic, but of corn starch.
Environmentally conscious arrival: The Salzburg Marathon expressly recommends that all participants travel by environmentally friendly public transport (e.g. train). In the urban area, public transport and bicycles are the most effective means of transportation. On the day of the race, the start number is valid as a ticket for public transport in the city area.
Reduction of motorized traffic: With the exception of the ORF camera motorcycles and the police motorcycles, which are important for the safe running of the event, there are no motorized vehicles on the running course. All employees and parts of the blue light organizations move along the route on mountain bikes or e-bikes. The Salzburg Marathon is the day of the year with the least traffic in the city of Mozart anyway!
Efficient logistics: Thanks to targeted considerations, the logistics trips and truck transports on the days of the marathon could be significantly reduced.
Economical and efficient use of resources: The Salzburg Marathon always favors environmentally friendly technologies.