Mushroom material is a form like material that is grown from agricultural byproducts and mushroom roots called Mycelium. The Mycelium is a natural, self-assembling glue. It is 100% renewable and has a low embodied energy and is compostable. Many compare this material to being the new plastic as it can be applied to many of the same purposes. Synthetic materials such as plastic, requires excessive amount of energy to develop which then results in becoming waste, slowly damaging our planet. However, this mushroom material is completely decomposable, returning into the environment in a natural way where it can be up cycled. It takes what we consider waste and forms into a material very similar to styrofoam, but with much less damage. Styrofoam occupies 25% of the landfills and also our natural environment for thousands and thousands of year without ever really fully decomposing. I think this material is extremely innovative and can really affect the way we design, replacing plastic with this mushroom material. We often forget how harmful plastics can be, especially with the chemicals added or it even being found in our water. I think that by using mushroom material as an alternative material for packaging we can really begin to change our future, helping us do less damage to our environment.

Here is a link to a ted talk, explaining the benefits of mushroom material!

Julie Nguyen

  1. momahony2014 says:

    Well written opinion piece Julie. Do try to include an image where you can – we are all visual people reading this and do like our images!

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