According to this article from U.S. News & World Report, the process of natural organic reduction or what is commonly referred by many consumers as “human composting” is now available in the state of Colorado. Legalized by the state over a year ago with a September 7, 2021, legal start date, at least one death care facility, The Natural Funeral in Lafayette, Colorado is open for natural organic reduction business.
Co-owner of The Natural Funeral, Seth Viddal, is quoted in the article calling the process an “exciting ecological option”. Viddal also says according to the article, “It’s a natural process where the body is returned to an elemental level over a short period of time. This is the same process but done with a human body inside of a vessel, and in our case, in a controlled environment.”
At present Viddal’s company plans to use “vessels” where a deceased is encased and packed with wood and straw. Viddal expects the body to return to a “soil” form in approximately six months with this method. The cost to the consumer for this process is $7,900 as compared to his charges of $2,200 for flame cremation. The Natural Funeral also offers alkaline hydrolysis, also known as “water cremation” in its arsenal of disposition methods. There price for alkaline hydrolysis is listed on their General Price List at $3,900.
The article also points out that in about a year’s time since natural organic reduction has been approved in the state of Washington, over 85 bodies have used the process for final disposition.
One of the three facilities licensed in the state of Washington is a business called Return Home. The CEO of that company, Micah Truman, is quoted in the article and says that his firm has transformed 16 bodies and has 74 vessels for potential growth. His process, again according to the article, is “an extremely precise scientific operation that takes only 60 days”.
Truman envisions much growth for the disposition method and expects young people to embrace the concept when he says in the article, “Our young people are going to teach us how to die better. It’s been really powerful for us.” I think what’s happened is that the younger generation really genuinely understands that we have to make sure that our Earth can stay whole.”
Natural organic reduction is now legal in Washington and Colorado and will be allowed in Oregon in July 2022.
Related – Kathleen Parker: Between cremation and composting, I’ll consider the latter. Joplin Globe (MO)
Here is the web-site for Recompose, thought to be the nation’s original natural organic reduction firm. . .located near Seattle, Washington.
More news from the world of Death Care:
- Vietnam veteran to be buried at Pike’s Peaks National Cemetery which he helped establish. The Gazette (CO)
- Families sue shuttered Lewiston funeral home over handling of bodies. Sun-Journal (ME)
- Medieval burial vault discovered in Bruges. Brussel Times (Belgium)
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