Emma van der Leest & Aneta Schaap-Oziemlak with Paul Verweij & Sybren De Hoog

Fungkee | Fungal Supercoatings

In collaboration with In collaboration with the Center of Expertise in Mycology, Radboudumc/Canisius Wilhelmina Ziekenhuis Nijmegen

To put an end to killing animals for their skin, Emma van der Leest & Aneta Schaap-Oziemlak want to enhance the practical use of cellulose-based bio-leather by making it waterproof with a spray derived from fungi that would damage our health in their every-day form.

To put an end to killing animals for their skin, they want to enhance the practical use of cellulose-based bio-leather by making it waterproof with a spray derived from fungi that would damage our health in their every-day form.

Fungi offer a wide spectrum of properties including water repellency, dyes and texture, which can be applied to improve qualities of biofabricated products. The cellulose-based ‘leather’, developed by Emma van der Leest, produced by microorganisms, is made for fashion. In this collaborative project - Fungkee | Fungal Supercoatings - with Paul Verweij and Sybren de Hoog from the Center of Expertise in Mycology, Radboudumc/Canisius Wilhelmina Ziekenhuis, she and Aneta Schaap-Oziemlak developed a waterproof fungi-derived bio-coating to improve functional design of ‘leather’. To avoid use of synthetics to obtain a 100% natural coating, they focused on exploring beneficial attributes of human pathogenic fungi. In ten years, they dream of repurposing all the oil storage tanks in the Port of Rotterdam as enormous fermentation vessels where micro-organisms transform residual waste streams into food and all kinds of useful materials.