18 August 2016

Ecovative’s new engineered wood panels eliminate formaldehyde emission problem

MycoBoard is a new type of engineered wood panel that is completely safe to use and can help its users to meet sustainability goals

Biomaterials company Ecovative is the pioneer and world leader in mycelium-based biomaterials. Founded in 2007, the company, which first attracted attention with its MycoFoam packaging materials, has also developed a new type of engineered wood panel that is completely safe to use and can help its users to meet sustainability goals.

MycoBoard panels are premium, customizable, and certified sustainable. Rather than being bound together using formaldehyde and other toxic resins, it is literally grown together using Ecovative’s mResin™ adhesive system. Derived from the mycelium in mushrooms, this “nature’s glue” is formaldehyde-free, safe, and healthy. This versatile, non-toxic engineered wood, which offers acoustic and fire-resistant properties, can be molded into custom shapes or pressed into boards, making it an ideal solution for the architectural and design community.

In fact, in its Formaldehyde Emission Standards for Composite Wood Products; Final Rule-Prepublication Copy the EPA noted that “while there are established alternatives to regulated composite wood products, e.g., lumber or solid wood, it is likely that new alternatives will be developed. For example, in 2014, EPA awarded a grant through EPA’s Small Business Innovation Research program competition to Ecovative Design, LLC. Ecovative makes packaging, building materials (furniture and panels) and automotive products by growing them from agricultural byproducts and mycelium, a fungal network of threadlike cells that are like the roots of mushrooms.”

“We welcome the EPA’s new lower urea-formaldehyde emission standards and are thrilled to be referenced as a potential solution in the guidelines. At Ecovative we believe that less bad is not enough. That’s why we are scaling our mResin adhesive system for mill level deployments as well as designing, developing, and selling biofabricated furniture for the home and office. All are grown from natural materials without any added toxic glues,” said Eben Bayer, Ecovative co-founder and CEO.

“Today Ecovative is working with mills across North America and Europe to pilot our mResin™ adhesive system. By using a living organism to transform existing feedstocks, primarily wood fiber, into glue, we can help mills raise their product performance rather than just focusing on meeting these lower emission standards. While our pilot program is currently full, we hope to have capacity to work with other mills starting in 2017,” said Gavin McIntyre, Ecovative co-founder and Chief Scientist.

MycoBoard panels are now available directly from Ecovative, as well as through its west coast distribution partner Trinity Innovations. Ecovative is also using its innovative mycelium-based technology to produce a range of products for the home and office under its Ecovative Interiors line.

Source: Bioplastics MAGAZINE, 2016-08-08.

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