Innovation That Matters

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Using crop waste and mycelium for product packaging


This solution could limit the harmful practice of crop stubble burning

Spotted: As well as producing greenhouse gas emissions and harming soil health, annual crop stubble burning practices also release harmful pollutants, deteriorating the air quality in regions like Delhi where the practice is common.  

In an effort to reduce polluting stubble burning and combat India’s enormous plastic waste problem, Faridabad-based startup Dharaksha Ecosolutions has created biodegradable packaging made using mycelium and waste crop stubble. 

The company feeds its fungal strain a mixture of crop stubble and sugars and under the right conditions, the mycelium will grow into a solid material. This dense, fibrous material is moulded and dried to create something similar to polystyrene. The final products have a shelf life of over two years, but will safely biodegrade in normal soil within 60 days 

With support from Cisco and Social Alpha’s Kirshi Mangal accelerator programme, Dharaksha plans to expand its production capacity in order to better cater to the mass packaging market. 

Springwise has spotted other products that are being made using mycelium, including insulation and home decor

Written By: Lauryn Berry and Matilda Cox



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