03/06/2015 - IWA 2015 / 6th March 2015: IWA OutdoorClassics opens, with the Bavarian Minister of the Interior, Building and Transport, Joachim Herrmann, MdL, and the Mayor of the City of Nürnberg, Dr. Klemens Gsell. The opening was followed by a talk given by the Finnish outdoor professional, Veikka Gustafsson
Friday, 6th March 2015 the IWA OutdoorClassics in Nuremberg opened its doors to the international trade visitors, operators and media.
The opening ceremony was held by the Mayor of the City of Nürnberg, Dr. Klemens Gsell.
Dr. Gsell welcomed the vistors to Nürnberg, stating the importance of the Bavarian city to the firearms and weapon industry since Medioeval era, and that the 41st edition of the IWA is the most important international event for hunting and shooting sports, outdoor equipment as well as civilian and official agency security supplies, an unmissable chance to knit contact networks and showcase products, trends and services.
The Bavarian Minister of the Interior, Building and Transport, Joachim Herrmann, MdL, addressed the public with a series of very interesting points. Hunters are important not only for the economy, but also for the environment; Mr. Herrmann highlighted the problem of the overcrowded wild boar population, and the risks this poses.
Mr. Herrmann also expressed the opinion that the German firearm law is already very restrictive, and that he sees no reason to change it adding more restrictions, although, in his opinion, the Nationales Waffenregister (NWR), the list of all allowed firearms for civilian use, helps to fight illegal weapons (although all4shooters.com does not agree to this point of view). Another point of interest are the "Blockiersysteme", systems to block the function of weapons on transport or for guns as part of a heritage. According to Mr. Hermann such systems should be adopted to the state of the art. He also mentioned the use by hunters. As those systems are not in use at the moment by hunters on their way to hunt, this subordinate clause could open a new point of discussion. Mr. Herrmann concluded his speech stating that the sector (firearms, accessories, gear, services, etc) has grown steadly into becoming a very important component of the economy.
The opening was followed by a talk given by the Finnish outdoor professional, mountaineer and entrepreneur Veikka Gustafsson on the theme “Outdoor as a Lifestyle versus Outdoor as Way of Living”.
Among other things, Mr. Gustafsson talked about the mindset a man needs to be able to climb and conquer mountains above 8000m, and - as an entrepreneur - the economic situation of the hunting community. Mr. Gustafsson classified Finnish hunters in two large categories: the first, comprising 60-70% of all hunters, hunt for the sake of hunting - literally.
This category shoots maybe a couple rounds each season, and still wondr why ammunition is sold in boxes of 20 rounds. The rest are what Mr. Gustafsson calls Lifestyle hunters; this category spends much more money. Mr. Gustafsson feels that many hunters of the first group could easily become Lifestyle hunters, and discussed a few options to convince a portion of these hunters to "switch sides", ending his talk and closing the ceremony.