Wanaka Outdoor Startup Doubles Down on Crowdfunding Success with Innovative Trash Solution


If you’ve spent much time outdoors, you’ll know how frustratingly messy and bulky any trash you carry can get. That is where the inspiration came for Matt Butler from KEA Outdoors. The Wanaka, New Zealand based outdoor gear company’s latest product release, the KEA STASH, a leak-free, smell-free, trash compacting bag for mess free adventures is now live on Kickstarter. 

The journey began in 2020 following the Covid lockdowns decimating Matt’s fly fishing guiding business. During that time he began working on designing products to solve problems he had while out exploring the backcountry and first started with the KEA KIT, a modular outdoor survival system. Following a successful crowdfunding campaign on Kickstarter, raising $300k in just over 30 days, Matt decided to start working on new product ideas alongside manufacturing and delivering the kits to backers, this is when the research and development for the KEA STASH began.

Trash is not the sexiest subject and therefore has not been serviced well in the outdoor gear market with current trash-bag options not evolving from the standard plastic or zip-lock bags. These tend to break, leak, smell and do nothing to reduce bulk so Matt decided to take on the challenge of designing something better.

The basic premise of the STASH is a dry-bag crossed with a zip-lock bag, but it does both jobs so much better. The 100% leak-proof inner-liner with large zip-seal means nothing can escape, or leak. But the real genius comes down to the compaction feature. By rolling the bag up from the bottom, you can crush your trash down to a fraction of the size, then use the compression straps to crank it down even further and say goodbye to carrying bulky trash.


Whilst testing the STASH, Matt also realized it is a design that could also suit many other uses outdoors such as a food bag, emergency water bag, dry bag or even a bear bag! The straps and aluminum hooks allow it to be attached to almost anything and even hung in a tree away from wildlife. It is available in 2 sizes to suit any adventure, the STASH GO for when you’re on the move and the STASH XL which is perfect for car camping, boating or kayaking.


Building on the success of the previous Kickstarter campaign, the STASH recently launched on Kickstarter to a very positive response, raising over $70k in the first 2 weeks. It is available for pre-order world-wide and has already been backed by adventurers from 20+ countries. Matt says he hopes to raise over $100k on this campaign and continue to grow his community of keen supporters and adventurers.


With the interest in KEA Outdoors range of outdoor preparedness gear growing, Matt also has several other products in the pipeline which will be produced alongside the STASH over the coming months and will be due for delivery early in the new year.


The KEA STASH is available for pre-order on Kickstarter until September 10, you can see the full details here:

Related Articles

Back to top button