Ever see a stool made of mushroom where you can actually sit? When you look at it first it looks like any other normal piece of furniture.
This sturdy white stools and beautiful accent tables looks like it has been crafted from marble or wood. But these are entirely made from the mycelium “roots” of mushrooms, agriculture waste, and microorganisms.
Usually in cases like brewing the beer the organisms are thrown away after the product is made. But the Micro-organisms are what makes the furniture so surreal and beautiful. Two companies Ecovative and bioMASON have collaborated and produced this. They focus mainly on biofabrication, a method to use sustainable alternatives for consumer good.
The microscopic, thread-like tissue in mushroom known as mycelium is used to make the base of the stools and the table legs. Bec mycelium naturally latches onto different substances to help mushrooms grow and form colonies, it can be coaxed into shape around a scaffolding of woodchips or hemp fibers, binding all of these components together as it grows.
They have grown the myceliem in such a way that it has become tougher and more durable. since the myceliem grows weaker when it starts loosing its nutritional vale it is necessary to make it durable. They are compressed and made tough enough to support human weight.
The marble-esque tabletop material is similarly customizable. It’s made using a process developed by Ginger Krieg Dosier, CEO of bioMASON. It relies on bacteria that form calcium carbonate around grains of sand, which is how sea shells and coral reefs are formed.
Since it need only ambient temperature it becomes more eco-friendly and sustainable.A few bio materials companies have shown that they can make leather made from mushrooms and spider silk-like cloth from lab-grown proteins, but most of them had problems scaling up their biofabricated products.The biofabrication process must also compete with current offerings in terms of cost and speed.
Traditional bricks, tiles and furniture take about three to five days but the processes for growing myco-board and biocement tabletops are done in less than a week. Now another problem is the cost reduction.
The biological organisms are usually cheaper than synthetic products. The main problem for the producers are the manufacturing cost and by modifying that and partnering with local factories, and how can they lower the price.
But the producers are excited for normal people to have the opportunity to bring some microbial manufacturing into their homes.
“Once customers experience bio fabricated products themselves, then they’ll drive us to find out is what else microorganisms can do.” says Dosier.