LifeMade's Envirocooler: The innovative cooler made with biodegradable foam technology
Foam coolers just got a sustainability upgrade.
The cooler is a ubiquitous product for consumers — from camping trips, to picnics and beach excursions. These days, from an industrial perspective, it's growing even more important as governments try to figure out how to ship COVID-19 vaccines around the world while keeping them cold.
Over the years, expanded polystyrene (EPS) or Styrofoam has become the material of choice for most coolers, and for good reason: it's inexpensive to produce, it's lightweight and durable, and it keeps things cold. Its insulating properties make it a good choice for many temperature control products.
Responsible disposal of Styrofoam
The challenge with Styrofoam coolers lies in ensuring responsible disposal at the end of its life. If Styrofoam is not disposed properly by the end consumer, it can be carried by the wind and water and end up in storm drains where it can stay in the environment for many years. In the ocean, where it does break down into smaller pieces, the small bits of Styrofoam are mistaken for food and ingested by marine life, causing digestion issues and leading to starvation. This also means that when humans eat seafood, we’re likely to be ingesting a lot of microplastics as well.
Changing consumer demand
The team at LifeMade knew that if we were to change consumer demand for foam coolers, we would need to create a product that performed just as well as traditional Styrofoam coolers but that was landfill biodegradable. With that goal in mind, our scientists and engineers developed a proprietary material with bio-additives which would degrade 92% in 4 years without leaving behind microplastics. They developed a new manufacturing process which would allow them to produce this cooler at a reasonable price for the consumer. They also designed the cooler to be 50% denser than other leading foam coolers so it’s durable and can easily handle the weight of 24 cans, plus ice.
Lifecycle of the Envirocooler
The innovative Envirocooler is made in LifeMade’s own US-based manufacturing facilities. It’s designed to be sturdy and reusable, and at the end of its life, it can be recycled and is accepted at facilities that take #6 plastic. At the same time, if consumers are not in the vicinity of a recycling facility, they can dispose of the Envirocooler with peace of mind. As the world’s first cooler made from foam with a proprietary biodegradable additive, the Envirocooler is a great option for eco-friendly families.
Learn about the key benefits of the Envirocooler from Brand Manager Rich Merlino.
Life. Made Better.
LifeMade is all about making life better through sustainable innovation and product experiences. Every step we take in this direction brings us closer to our vision of a no-compromise future — one where everyone has access to disposable products that are as good for the earth as they are convenient and enjoyable to use. As pioneers in our industry with a century’s worth of experience, it’s our responsibility to harness what we do best — materials innovation and production — for a better world. We’re inspired by the families that enjoy our products and committed to meaningful change.