Ovum Fungi — a new disposition method??
Every once in a while during my searches for Funeral Director Daily topics I’ll come across something I wasn’t aware of in the death care industry. Today I bring you information on what is called the “Ovum Fungi”. This is a product that this press release and the company website refers to as “an eco-friendly burial option for human remains”.
I’ve been licensed for over 42 years and while the burial process of the “Ovum Fungi” full-body disposition is that of a green burial, I’m pretty certain that I’ve seen no one be buried in the “Ovum Fungi” method as described and depicted by the company.
The disposition method is very similar to a disposition via Natural Organic Reduction (NOR) or what some call human composting. Since NOR is only legal in about four or five states at this time, I’m guessing that the Ovum Fungi process for a complete human remains would only be permissible in those states also. Otherwise, it is possible in my opinion, that it could be legal in certified cemeteries as a human disposition green burial.
Go ahead and read the press release and take a look at the website, but as comprehended by me the Ovum Fungi method of full body burial would be to encapsulate the full body human remains, put into a fetal position, into an egg shaped mycelium pod. The pod would then be buried and the mycelium material would accelerate the process of decomposition to soil.
So, with that explanation you can see why I believe it is similar to both NOR and green burials, but it is also different in some respects. The difference with Natural Organic Reduction, in my opinion, is that the leaders in NOR, Recompose and Return Home, complete the organic reduction in controlled environments before releasing the end product of soil as compared to burial in a pod where the end product stays where it is buried to promote growth of plant life and trees.
The difference that I see with green burial is distinct fetal-position of the deceased encapsulated in the mycelium pod. Green burials that I’ve been made aware of generally consist of burial, with or without a container, but with the deceased placed into the grave in the traditional horizontal position.
It should be noted that there is a small egg-shaped mycelium based pod container that can be used to inter cremated remains also. While this, in my opinion, does not help in organic reduction of the deceased, it can be promoted to have one’s remains be near where a tree or other living plants may grow.
I’m not so sure that I understand all the workings of the Ovum Fungi concept but it does appear to be another option that is out there for those folks who want to depart this world in a way that they believe will help the environment for those left behind. I also think it is imperative that funeral directors know of all of these options simply because at some point in time a potential client will walk through your doors to inquire about how these options can be done in your community.
Related — Here is an article that tells of actor Luke Perry being buried in what has been described as a “Mushroom Suit”.
More news from the world of Death Care:
- Letter to the Editor: Green burial sought, denied. Pine and Lakes Echo Journal (MN)
- Family fears dead relative is “lost” in Travis County cemetery. KXAN- TV Investigations. (TX)
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