Once derided as simple pond scum, algae is poised to become the newest source of sustainable foam products.
Image via Flickr user Soil Science
Algae—enemy of ponds, lakes, and middle-school bio quizzes everywhere. That is until recently, when scientists discovered that the long-derided life form could be used to produce environmentally sustainable foam. Clean tech company Algix and material development company Effekt just announced their big plans to take algae and use it in multiple lifestyle products, including footwear, sporting goods, and the universal favorite, the yoga mat.
Image via Tony and Debbie
Marketed under the name “Bloom,” the foam is produced using Algix’s dried algae biomass, collected from Asian and American waste streams. According to PSFK, this type of algae doesn’t require any pesticides, isn’t an “edible” food, and is widely available. And thanks to global warming, algae blooms have only increased in recent years. Rob Falken, Bloom Holding’s Managing Director, reports: “Flexible foams have been overwhelmingly made out of nonrenewable petrochemicals for decades. Over the past year we’ve worked really hard to create a suitable algae biomass alternative that doesn’t compromise performance.”
Scientists also recently discovered that algae can be used as a renewable energy source. Who knew that something once seen as “so annoying” could actually become “so great?” To learn more about Bloom, check out the company’s website here.