Ecovative Design: Saving the Planet with Mushrooms

Ecovative Design: Saving the Planet with Mushrooms
Source: Ecovative Design

What do you typically use mushrooms for? Cooking, medicine, maybe even composting. It turns out that mushrooms and its natural components can be put to other uses.

Co-founders, Eben Bayer and Gavin McIntyre built Ecovative Design on the breakthrough idea to use the mushroom component mycelium—“nature’s glue”—to grow high-performance products that are safe, healthy, and certified sustainable. The startup was the first to introduce this mycelium technology in 2006. It now has 40 patents in 31 countries and most mycelium materials are made under license from Ecovative Design. The company has created several sustainable products out of mycelium.

One of Ecovative products is MycoComposite which uses mycelium to bind together organic agricultural byproducts, such as wood chips, to produce durable, bio-based and 100% compostable materials. Another is MycoFlex, this product enables the engineering of high-performance, pure mycelium foam. This product can be tailored to create many products including textiles, foams for makeup application and different kinds of apparel. MycoComposite is Ecovative Design’s patented biomaterials platform utilizing mycelium as compastable packaging products. This helps decrease the use of plastics and single-use products which take up to 500 year to decompose.

Unlike plastics, mycelium is a natural material that easily breaks down and returns to the earth. Ecovative Design wants to help save the planet by reducing plastic use and by reducing the slaughter of animals.

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