When it was announced at Fortune Green a couple weeks ago that Ecovative Design's EcoCradle mushroom-based packaging was in a pilot program with Dell I thought this would be the perfect story for Earth Day. So Happy Earth Day everyone!
The story of Ecovative's mushroom packaging is a neat one and just the type of thing I like to highlight on SISG. The company is the brainchild of two RPI grads and is focused on eco-friendly solutions to packaging and insulation - two markets that need continued eco-innovation.
At the Fortune Green conference Dell announced they were eight months into a pilot program with Ecovative. Their engineers had worked with Ecovative's to design a version of their EcoCradle mushroom packaging to secure Dell servers during shipment. The final result was a EcoCradle material that incorporated local cotton waste from Austin, TX into the mushroom-based material. The EcoCradle packaging supports servers which often weigh more than 100lbs. The project is exciting for Ecovative and also shows Dell's continued commitment to reducing packaging waste.
Last year furniture company Steelcase began shipping products using EcoCradle packaging. Steelcase is using EcoCradle packaging made of agricultural byproducts like seed husks and cotton burrs bound together by mushroom roots.
Co-founders Eben Bayer and Gavin McIntyre have been experimenting with applications for mushroom-based material since 2007 when they came up with an idea for home insulation as part of a studio course at RPI.
Moving forward look for EcoCradle packaging to expand into more consumer products. The company is working on a wine bottle shipper and does custom work for clients.