The clock counts down to zero. Tons of confetti is dropped as the crowd roars and “I’M GOING TO DISNEY WORLD!” will be declared by the MVP of Super Bowl 50. The next thing you know every player of the winning team is proudly adorned in t-shirts and matching caps bearing their teams name and logo which signifies that they are World Champions. But who is reading the crystal ball prior to kick off to know the winner of next months big game. Isn’t that how all that gear is produced for the special moment?
Not exactly friends. In fact, BOTH teams will have tens of thousands of merchandise produced for the February 7th event.
That’s how manufacturers fulfill the immediate post-game demand for fan gear— by making it ahead of time, long before knowing which team will come out on top.
So where does all the losing team’s merchandise go?
On Monday morning, the products will be shipped from the National Football League and various retailers to a warehouse in Pennsylvania belonging to World Vision, an international aid group. From there, the merchandise will be sent overseas to impoverished nations and distributed to children and families in need.
For example, the unused San Francisco 49ers gear from Super Bowl XLVII went to Zambia, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Armenia and Romania, according to World Vision. In 2011, after the New Orleans Saints defeated Indianapolis, the Colts gear was sent to earthquake-ravaged Haiti.
Where the merchandise goes this year has yet to be determined, according to World Vision spokeswoman Sheryl Watkins.
“After the goods have been received and inventoried, we will let our offices around the world know what is available,” she said. “Those who have a need in their projects for a particular item — sweatshirts in cold-weather countries, t-shirts in tropical ones — will make their requests, and we will ship them over the next year.”
Among the countries where they may end up are Zambia, Bosnia, Romania, Armenia, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Mongolia, Uganda, Burundi, Congo, Mali, and Rwanda, she said.