In the Netherlands, they buried the first man in a coffin from the fungus. The ecological sarcophagus was made by a company that claims that human remains will decompose in two or three years, and in addition provide nutrients to the surrounding nature. “This coffin means that we can actually feed the earth to our bodies. We are nutrients, not waste,” says a manufacturer of special coffins.
“I didn’t go to him (for a funeral), but I talked to a relative before that – it was a touching moment, we were dealing with the life cycle. He lost his mother, but he was happy because she will return to nature thanks to this box and will soon live like a tree “he told the newspaper Metro Bob Hendrikx, founder of the Dutch start-up Loop, which makes coffins from mushrooms.
According to him, the mycelium, or mycelium, from which fungi commonly grow, also plays other roles. Among other things, it recycles. “Mycelium is constantly looking for waste products – oil, plastics, metals and other pollutants, which it converts into nutrients for the environment,” says the 26-year-old businessman, who studied at Delft University of Technology.
“This coffin means that we can actually feed the earth to our bodies. We are nutrients, not waste,” he added. The fungus neutralizes toxins and provides fresh food to everything that grows on earth. In addition, its fibers can be used to make many things, including coffins.
Instead of ten years, only three years
In a traditional coffin, the human body can decay for ten or more years as the process slows down the synthetic clothing or lacquered wood used to make the coffin.
According to Hendrikx, the natural sarcophagus from the fungus actively contributes to the decomposition process. The soil absorbs the coffin within a month to six weeks and the remains are said to be fully decomposed within two or three years.
The production of the sarcophagus takes several weeks, the fungus grows straight into the shape of a coffin and is then allowed to dry naturally. Once in moist soil, it “revives” and begins the decomposition process.
So far, the company has produced ten coffins, one of which costs 1,250 euros (over 33,000 crowns). Hendrikx hopes that the price will fall as soon as production starts in bulk.