Materia Madura is a woman-led sustainable materials and design company. Durable, non-toxic, and locally sourced, their waste-based material can be applied to multiple design applications resulting in sustainable and sophisticated products.
Plantain and coffee, cultural staple foods of Puerto Rico, are produced and consumed in abundance therefore their organic waste is also abundant. Analysing food waste as a critical societal issue and a local resource, a new material was invented from waste matter to open innovative possibilities for design applications. Taking advantage of this local waste and transforming it through a design approach, Materia Madura aims to highlight how many everyday objects are designed with toxic, unsustainable materials when they can be produced with locally sourced, non-toxic, and sustainable materials.
While individual consumers can obtain Materia Madura products through their online store, they also provide wholesale and custom designs for businesses. Offering an alternative to agricultural waste, food waste, and recycling, by buying Materia Madura products, businesses and individuals can obtain everyday products that are sustainable while contributing to the reduction of local food waste and Puerto Rico's economy.
Materia Madura works closely with raw matter as to understand its properties and characteristics in order to find the best texture, shape, scale, form and application that the material itself ought to represent. From the start, the making process is determined significantly by the material at hand. The properties and inherent characteristics of the material itself end up dictating the method to be used in each design. For most of the products that the company designs, full-scale clay prototypes are made of each individual design in order to then make custom, re-usable moulds. Once the moulds are finished, the processed plantain and coffee ground waste is poured into the moulds to dry. After the products have set, the designs are taken out of the moulds and finished by hand.
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