Ecovative has opened access to all businesses and individuals in Europe who want to use the company’s mycelium-based, plastic-free material in their own products.
The company’s patented renewable material, called MycoComposite, is made out of mycelium from mushroom roots, largely sourced from agricultural waste that would otherwise end up in a landfill. Mycelium is a strong, water-resistant material that is also able to return to the soil as nutrients. The material is already in use in a number of industries, serving a variety of uses from packaging material to insulation for buildings. Further, the material allows for the manufacturing of products that are non-toxic and free of harmful forever chemicals, unlike many plastics.
MycoComposite will now be a part of the European Open Patent Program, which is intended to promote innovations in plastic-free products and make such developments more widespread.
“The goal of Ecovative has always been to provide the ‘picks and shovels’ for a new generation of businesses realizing the potential of mycelium technology,” said Eben Bayer, Ecovative co-founder and CEO. “The growing demand for environmentally beneficial products and processes is creating immense new opportunities not to reinvent the wheel, but to change what the wheel is made of, and we’re excited to see the new discoveries and scalable solutions made with this versatile technology.”
Ecovative Joins Companies Creating Nature-Based Plastic Alternatives
Meanwhile, consumer demand for green packaging has led to considerable market growth in the industry, which is expected to rise from $253.8 billion in 2021 to at least $561.6 billion by 2031. Along with Ecovative, many organizations and corporations are working to meet this rising demand with solutions found in nature. Recently, Hive Energy acquired a bamboo plantation for production of biodegradable products made in partnership with BambooLogic. Corona has also launched a biodegradable and compostable six-pack carrier made from barley straw.
Ecovative’s MycoComposite has already been launched by Loop Biotech, a sustainable coffin and urn company that uses the mycelium-based material in their products.
“Loop Biotech has seen firsthand the huge demand for innovative, planet-friendly solutions enabled by mycelium materials,” said Bob Hendrikx, founder of Loop Biotech. “I started this company to help humanity leave a positive footprint on the Earth, which is only possible when we collaborate with living organisms like fungi.”
Europe has reportedly seen a sharp rise in interest for entrepreneurial applications of MycoComposite, making it the ideal location to offer open access to its patent. MycoComposite licensing and partnerships will also still be available outside of Europe as well.