Problem DescriptionPlastic foams are made from finite and often-harmful petrochemicals, don’t biodegrade, and contribute to growing waste in landfills and our environment. As more cities recognize the hazards of many traditional materials, there is a gap on the supply side for alternatives to foam packaging, insulation, and other synthetics. These alternatives need to be not only environmentally friendly, but high-performing and cost-competitive as well. Ecovative’s biomaterial platform technology resolves critical concerns for waste, energy, and consumer health by working with nature to grow an alternative. The innovative materials science company uses local agricultural waste as feedstock to grow fungal mycelia that can be formed into a host of byproducts, from packaging materials to building insulation and car components.
Founders Eben Bayer and Gavin McIntyre developed the core ideas underpinning their products and
production methods while studying at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, where
teacher and mentor Burt Swersey challenged his students to develop marketable,
innovative and profitable products that could at the same time improve the world.
Since then Ecovative has grown measurably. In 2015 Ecovative opened a full-scale 20,000 square foot manufacturing plant in Troy, NY for production of Mushroom Packaging.
Solution StageOne of the 7 stages of an innovation. Learn more
|STAGE||SPECIALIST SKILLS REQUIRED||EXAMPLE ACTIVITIES||RISK LEVEL AND HANDLING||FINANCE REQUIRED||KINDS OF EVIDENCE GENERATED||GOAL|
|Developing and implementing5||Strong leadership, management, implementation skills|
|A robust and detailed case developed through formal evaluation and evidence gathering – use of a control group to isolate impact||An implemented and sustainable innovation|