Are there alternatives to foam when it comes tp packaging and insulation? Absolutely yes. contends Ecovative Design, a Green Island, NY company engaged in the design, development, and testing of new products and biomaterial applications. The company has launched two extremely green mushroom-based products. Start with the packaging material, said to perform in customized shapes like foam does. This high-performance alternative to molded or fabricated EPS, EPP, EPE is renewable, compostable, and cost-competitive. Ecovative’s Mushroom packaging, is a “Cradle to Cradle Gold Certified alternative” to conventional plastic packaging. While many renewable packaging materials are made from plants, Ecovative contends it is harnessing a kingdom that’s never been considered for materials: Fungi. This new technology has been used by customers such such as Dell, Steelcase, and Crate & Barrel. It is now being launched globally. and was recently showcased in Dusseldorf, Germany at Interpack 2014.
These high-performance materials are produced from High performance biomaterials grown from mycelium and agricultural waste.
According to Ecovative, Myco Foam, which has been proven to replace plastic foams for protective packaging, will move next to insulation. Today’s most common insulation materials have some serious negative environmental consequences,” the company states on its website. “We’re developing natural, rapidly renewable Mushroom Insulation as a healthy, easy to install insulation product that performs.”
As excited as many green insulation proponents are, the company states its Mushroom Insulation is not yet commercially available. “We’re working hard to develop materials and production methods that are sustainable and code compliant,” writes the company.
Ecovative Design has made the commitment to “working with industry and consumers to rid the world of toxic, unsustainable materials.. Ecovative is a material science company developing a new class of home-compostable bioplastics based on mycelium, a living organism. Mushroom Materials are high-performance, environmentally responsible alternatives to traditional plastic foam packaging, insulation, and other synthetic materials.”
Art: Ecovative Design