'The Obscure Lampshades' manifest the systemic approach to addressing the world’s biggest sustainability challenges with a nature-inspired solution.
The lampshades are made from one of BIOHM’s materials, 'ORB' or organic refuse biocompound, which consists of food and agricultural by-products and a unique plant-based binder. ORB is a 100% natural, sustainable and renewable material that can be formed into sheets or moulded to create intricate three-dimensional products.
Global coffee production generates more than 20 million tonnes of waste per year, whilst orange production generates approximately 5 million tonnes of waste.
Incorporating up to 3 kilograms of ‘waste’ orange peel or coffee chaff and capturing up to 1.5 kg of carbon, each lampshade acts as a mini carbon sink, diverting waste away from landfill and regenerating the environment. At end-of-life, the lampshades can be fed back into the production process of ORB to make new products, passing their carbon onto the next product or they can be cold-composted.
Obscure lampshades are lovingly, hand-made to order at BIOHM HQ in South Bermondsey in London, UK. Biohm’s supply chain is hyper-localised and the production process is completely closed-loop, which means that there are no waste streams or by-products created as a result of this approach to production.
This product will be biomanufactured using a ‘Just-In-Time’ approach to production to make sure that every Obscure Lampshade is produced with a clearly defined purpose to serve. This allows us to avoid overproduction and encourage responsible and pre-planned shopping practices.
Pre-processing of the ORB substrate can include grinding or dehydrating the waste. It is then mixed with the binder and pressed into sheets before it can be moulded into shape.
ORB is 100% biodegradable, vegan, sustainable and renewable. The designers achieve this by sourcing waste by-products from the food production or agricultural sectors and processing it into a homogeneous filler which is bound together with a unique and completely organic binder to form an affordable and sustainable replacement for wood-based sheet materials.
Biohm’s unique binder creates a material that can be cold-composted or reused as an input in the same manufacturing process. Biohm has developed a variety of mechanical and aesthetic properties to meet a wide spectrum of applications that surpass industry equivalent materials; presenting a viable, sustainable alternative to chipboard, MDF, OSB and plasterboard.
As Biohm continues to develop the characteristics of the product with respect to mechanical strength, durability and waterproofing, they anticipate their potential market to expand further.
Information submitted by the maker and edited by the Future Materials Bank.
Orange peel, coffee chaff waste, plant-based binder