Frequently Asked Questions
Is the material waterproof?
No. It is water resistant to a certain point, but long term exposure to moisture will cause the material to begin its decomposition process. Mycelium is naturally hydrophobic, but the substrates we use can absorb water. If the material is given a chance to dry out, then it likely won’t affect the material’s structure. We recommend coating it to make it waterproof.
How does it decompose?
Mushroom® Materials do not degrade without exposure to living organisms, such as that found in soil biota, and moisture. You can think of it like an unfinished piece of wood. A wooden table isn’t going to decompose without exposure to the right conditions. Like most things you’d keep in your home or in a warehouse, Mushroom Materials will last. But if you leave that wooden table outside, or put wood chips into a compost pile, it will naturally decompose. The same is true with Mushroom Materials.
What type of mushroom are you using?
Our technology and processes are a trade secret protected by our patents, including the specific strain we use. We have a large strain library and can actually use different species to achieve different material properties.
Are there any allergy concerns?
There is no known allergen risk with our Mushroom® Materials. The mushroom we use is very similar to a commonly used medicinal mushroom (found in nutritional supplements, etc). There are no spores involved in our process as we keep the organism at its vegetative state. A huge body of literature is published on humans’ interactions with this type of mushroom, and no allergens have been reported. We have worked with third party labs to verify the safety of our materials.
Can you eat Mushroom Materials?
In theory, yes. However it is not tasty, and not nutritious, so we do not recommend it.
Can I tour your facility?
Although we would love to honor your tour request, we currently only host customers, partners, or investors. Ecovative is still a fairly small company with huge goals to make the world a better place by replacing toxic materials. We are dedicating our time to ensure Mushroom® Materials are of the highest quality and are made widely available.
As part of our continuing commitment to education, we offer a variety of multimedia content that showcases our technology and offers a virtual tour of the facility. There are many options, including our feature on PBS Nova or CBS News. There are also several Ecovative TED talks, and the videos on our youtube channel.
Why don’t you list the cost of the materials?
Since each product is custom designed and custom molded today, we also have custom prices. Some factors that will determine price include unit volume, surface finish, and geometry of the product. For many of our customers, Mushroom Materials are cost-competitive to the conventional materials they are replacing. If your company is interested in our materials, we’d love to hear from you to begin the quoting process.
Can you produce in my region/ship internationally?
We look forward to setting up manufacturing facilities across the globe as we continue to expand. Locations of manufacturing facilities will be determined by licensing partners, customer demand, and economic feasibility. We are able to ship internationally from our New York facilities today.
How much energy do you use in your process? Have you conducted a Life Cycle Assessment?
Ecovative has not yet published a peer reviewed Life Cycle Assessment (LCA). Our aim is to have an energy and environmental footprint that is not just a little better, but far better, than conventional materials. We look forward to sharing these numbers and making comparisons to plastic production in the future.
Are you making food packaging (cups, plates, take out containers)?
No. Mushroom® Materials are not certified for direct food contact at this time. Our expertise today is in producing protective packaging buffers to protect items like televisions and furniture during shipment. We know that these materials are bad for the environment and are a large contributor to plastic pollution, but it is not something we are dedicated our resources to today. If you’re with a company interested in starting a development project with us, please contact us.
Where do you get your mushrooms from? Can I grow mushrooms for you?
Ecovative has a team of internal and external professionals that keep our trade secret mycelium library running. We rely on our Chief Mycologist and the strain team to harvest specimens seasonally and we import strains from other laboratories as needed. Our specific process requires a large output of mycelium. We appreciate the support, but are not looking for additional assistance in this area.
How can I place a bulk order?
For custom or bulk order pricing, contact our sales team: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Where do the shipping costs I see come from?
The shipping costs on our webstore are real-time costs provided by carriers, which means you pay exactly what it costs us to ship your order to you.
What is the Standard Free Shipping?
Free Shipping is processed through USPS.
When will my order ship?
Our materials are grown, not made. Usually we have the inventory on hand to fulfill an order within a few days of receiving it. If we have a high volume of orders and our inventory is depleted, we have to grow more to replace it. Sometimes this means it can take 2-3 weeks for your order to leave our facility.
How long will it take an international order to arrive?
We suggest allowing up to 4-6 weeks for international orders, though most arrive more quickly. We cannot provide guaranteed arrival dates for international orders due to time in customs, etc.
Do I have to do anything about customs?
Most countries allow our material to pass through customs without any problems. At the moment, the only country that does not allow our material is Australia. All customs forms and information needed should be provided in your order.
Why is the carrier charging me an additional tax?
You are responsible for any additional international duties and fees, and carriers may refuse to release your order until they are paid.
If you have a question that isn’t answered on this page, please contact us.