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How to make a styrofoam-like packing material with fungi

A new form of biodegradable shipping material by a company called Ecovative is created by filling a reusable mold with agricultural waste like rice husks and is then sprayed with mushroom root cells. The cells eat the husks and grow to form a dense network that packs the mold. After baking, the lightweight material comes out similar to Styrofoam, but its production uses one eighth the energy.

This creative concept was designed by Ecovative and was named one PopSci's "Best of What's New" for 2009.

Here's a "how it's made" video:


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