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Ecovative Design


Greensulate™ organic insulation / Ecovative De.. / LicenseCC-by-sa - Attribution Share Alike

Biodegradable, compostable packaging

Product or process
EcoCradle™ packaging is great for the environment; it’s made of agricultural byproducts that come from renewable sources. This environmentally friendly innovation is just as reliable, easy to use, and affordable as competing packaging products, and it's an excellent replacement for custom molded foams like EPS and EPP.
Consumer products that use this technology
Greensulate™ organic insulation (2011), EcoCradle™ packaging (currently available)
Challenges solved
Energy-intensive production and life cycle of foams.
Differences from existing products
This packaging is compostable and biodegradeable.
The biomimicry story
Ecovative Design reinvented the product/process cycle to be a more complete cycle by turning waste into a resource. Their product is ultimately involved in a new, biodegradable cycle where the lifetime of the product matches the lifetime of its use. While the use of mushrooms to create the resin is bioutilization, this process is biomimetic in the sense that it mimics nature's cyclic material flows. They saw that the function of industrial resins could be solved using the abundant and benign resins of fungi, then found a suitable fungus species.

"Eben [Bayer] and Gavin [McIntyre] were fascinated by mushrooms growing on wood chips, and observing how the fungal mycelium strongly bonded the wood chips together. This inspired them to think of new ways of using mycelium as a resin. In a class at Rensselaer, called Inventor's Studio, they applied this new process for binding together insulating particles, creating Greensulate™. Rather than just decreasing the environmental impact of conventional polystyrene foams, this invention creates a whole new paradigm where composite materials are literally grown, harnessing the incredible efficiency of nature." (From company's website)

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over 5 years ago
Made from cotton-seed hulls and mycelium, or mushroom roots, new protective packaging for Steelcase Inc.'s Currency line of ready-to-assemble office furniture has earned packaging supplier Ecovative the Innovator of the Year award in the Non FDA-Regulated Products category of the 2011 Greener Package Awards. (In June, Ecovative was also named as a DuPont Award winner.) See article at
over 6 years ago
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About the Product

Company: Ecovative Design

Product Phase: Available

Product Type: Packaging

Patent Name: Pending

Patent Number: Pending