As Keep Britain Tidy points out, vast numbers of disposable foam bodyboards end up in landfill every year from beaches around the world or, when they snap, unleash miniature polystyrene balls into the marine environment.
Teaming up with Cornish surfboard shaper Tim Lupton and ex Irish national champion, Chris Martin, the Magical Mushroom Company (MMC) is helping solve this problem with a new kickstarter campaign.
Ex Irish national surfing champion and founder of Skunkworks Surf Co Chris Martin – another designer of sustainable surfboards – has also been also involved in the design of the later and improved board.
The bodyboard, which has already been prototyped, is made from mycelium and agricultural waste as a feedstock. Mushrooms are the fruits of a giant underground ‘tree’ – which is mycelium. Mycelium itself is made of Chitin, a natural glue which has the added benefit of being water resistant.
Paul Gilligan, Founder and CEO of MMC, said “Surfing and bodyboarding has a big impact on the environment, part of which is driven by the millions of disposable bodyboards used for short periods by tourists every year and then discarded”
“The most important thing is trying to solve this problem at scale. A small number of boards wouldn’t make a dent in the mountain of plastic sitting in landfill for hundreds of years. A big problem needs a big solution, and with our ability to make large amounts of Mushroom Packaging, which with some magic can shaped into bodyboards, combined with the support of the surfing community, we think we are the right team to have a go.”