Utilizing the mysterious Pestalotiopsis microspora fungus as a solution to the worldwide plastic problem

How can the retail industry eliminate packaging waste, through natural degradation of plastic material?

Millions of tonnes of plastics are discarded worldwide every year, much of it in packaging. Only a small proportion is recycled, and much ends up in landfill

9 billion tons of plastic have been produced by humans since 1950. Fewer than 9% of this amount has been recycled, while 12% has been incinerated.

79% of plastic has been accumulated in landfills or natural environments.

The most common types of plastic in waste, such as high- and low-density polyethylene (H/LDPE), polypropylene, polyvinylchloride and polyethylene terephthalate (PET), break down only very slowly: some can take centuries.

Design solution

My idea is to design a product shaped like a mushroom that is hallow. Inside, I will place the pestalotiopsis fungi, and I will make a lid. This way, users can put plastic inside the mushroom which will naturally degrade with time.

The object is designed to be aesthetically pleasing, doubling as an interior design piece.



Material and measurement

internal structure made out of mycelium coated with thin metal to separate the two mushroom types. Bioplastic can also be used to reinforce this structure.

The exterior of the product made out of mushroom leather, this can be bought from several companies such as "mycoworks", or made at home.


Production Procedure

  • making the cardboard mushroom shape

  • sterile environment, gloves and regular alcohol disinfectant

  • mixing flour, water and mycelium

  • stacking on cardboard

  • wrapping in seran and storing in dark environment