This article was originally featured on our sister site BUILDER.
Ecovative co-founder and CEO Eben Bayer has dedicated his career to finding sustainable, healthy, and safe alternatives for building materials, which led him to discover a way to “grow” them. Now, the New York-based biomaterials company has launched a first-of its-kind line of furniture that is grown from mushroom-based material.
The Ecovative Interiors line of furniture is created by utilizing the company’s signature MycoBoard panels that leverage mycelium, a glue-like substance found in mushrooms, and the company’s mResin adhesive system. The technology binds a variety of lignin- and cellulose-based loose materials and agricultural waste, such as flax, canola, hemp, and recycled wood to create panels for construction. The material is formaldehyde free, VOC free, and fire resistant, and can be molded into any shape or form.
The launch began with the Imperial Stool, which was unveiled at the SynBioBeta Conference in San Francisco on October 5th. The rest of the line made its debut at the 2016 Greenbuild International Conference and Expo held October 5-7 in Los Angeles.
“Ecovative grows every component of the Imperial stool: the legs, seat, upholstery, cushioning, and the packaging it is protected with. We envision a future where everything for the home—and office—is grown," says Bayer. "From the exterior walls, to the insulation, the floors, walls, wall tiles, cabinets, chairs, tables; all of the components traditionally constructed with standard engineered wood containing formaldehyde and other toxic resins, can now be cultivated in our facilities using sustainable, grown products."
The stool’s leather-like seat is made from MycoFlex cushions, a 100% mycelium foam product that replaces polystyrene, and other petroleum-based foams in packaging, horticulture, and building construction.
The line also includes a number of other home and office furniture products, including two other stools, a side table, a key holder, desk organizer, and a large desk. The products range in price from $5 to $1,199. At the end of its life, the entire piece of furniture is compostable.
“Ecovative’s new line of grown furniture fulfills the promise of a truly circular economy: every component can be returned to the earth without harm at the end of its useful life by providing nutrients, not pollutants, to the local environment,” Bayer says.