The biodegradable Eco-Sponges are made using a several step process with minimal by-products.
This is a seasonal crop so enough is grown during the summer to have inventory for the winter.
The gourd is grown from seed and trained up trellises. Each gourd can reach several feet long so keeping it elevated off the ground is essential.
Once ripe, the gourd is harvested and the outer flesh and seeds are removed through manual agitation and water. Remaining inside is the skeleton, the basis of the sponge.
The gourd plant skeletons are air dried for several weeks to ensure no moisture is left.
The dried skeletons are cut open and flattened under high pressure, then the sponge shape is die cut from the flat fiber. This is why when you begin using the sponge it will grow up to 10 times its original size.
Oftentimes the sponge will curl, this just means it's following the natural curl of the round gourd plant.
The extra off-cuts from the fiber are composted and used to enrich the soil the gourds are grown in.
The sponges are hand-assembled in our Texas facility in packs of 3 using minimal and biodegradable paper packaging that is printed locally. Each worker in our Texas facility is paid more than double minimum wage.
Each sponge is completely biodegradable and can be either composted or buried in the garden at end of life.