Insultation and packaging material has always had a large environmental impact and new innovations are a welcome development. Ecovative is researching a new material that they are calling “Greensulate” which will be made from recycled materials and mushroom cells to form a compostable alternative to Styrofoam. Springwise writes:

Rather than being manufactured from preexisting ingredients—a process that inevitably takes considerable energy—Ecovative’s Greensulate is actually grown afresh. A mixture including water, recycled paper and rice hulls (a form of agricultural waste) is injected with living mushroom cells inside a mold and then placed in a dark environment. There the cells begin to grow and sprout thousands of cellular strands. In one to two weeks, the result is ready to be dried into a panel of insulation that can be used to keep a house warm in winter and cool in summer, or to protect a package during shipment.

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