Replacing plastics with … mushrooms

Continuing today’s waste theme on my blogs, here’s an innovative one.

The Earthbound Report

In a circular economy, all materials either need to be reusable or safely biodegradeable. Many common forms of plastic are neither of those things, and are thus something of an environmental hazard. Oil based and non-biodegradeable, plastics accumulate in landfill or in ocean gyres, and accumulate in the bodies of birds and animals too.

Ecovative's Mushroom® Packaging cradle wine shipperBut plastics are also incredibly useful, so the race is on to find alternative materials that are as versatile. There are a bunch of options, many of them very familiar, but one of the most extraordinary is the biomaterials approach of a company called Ecovative. They have pioneered materials that are grown, not manufactured. They call them mushroom materials.

There’s a very simple natural process behind mushroom materials. The genius is in streamlining it to the point that you can base a factory around it. In an nutshell, they start with an agricultural waste product…

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