FRUMO

Frumo is a self-healing material for furniture and floor construction made from food waste and natural resin, which, in addition to being processed with wood tools, can be seamlessly, endlessly and partially repaired as well as three-dimensionally moulded by applying heat.

Problem

Wood-based Panels

In Germany, 180 million cubic metres of trees are felled for furniture every year, with 80% of furniture and 40% of flooring consisting of wood-based panels, which are disposed of after an average of three years due to irreparable damage. This fast pace increases demand, so that entire trees are chipped instead of using residual wood. The chips are pressed into boards with formaldehyde, gypsum or cement and thus either emit harmful vapours or are bound together with the largest CO² emitters in the construction industry. The plastic coating ultimately turns them into hazardous waste that is incinerated at the end.

chances

Raw Materials

All ingredients for Frumo are harvested from various tree species in their living state. This means they grow back faster than wood and do not require deforestation. This means that not only are fewer trees felled for the furniture industry, but more different tree species are planted. These bind more CO² during their extended lifetime and create habitats for native animals and insects. Native fruit trees in particular, which are otherwise not economically viable for the furniture industry, become attractive, which promotes the regional economy.

Natural resin + food waste = Frumo

Natural Resin

Natural resin is a wound secretion from trees that is obtained by making targeted cuts in the trunk without harming or felling the tree. For Frumo, the resin is obtained from tree species native to the European Union.

food waste

The year-round utilisation of seasonally changing food waste enables regional production with short transport routes. Food producers pay by the kilo for the disposal of their waste, which is why juice and beer producers in particular dry their waste before disposal, thereby removing water, losing weight and ultimately paying less for waste disposal. This existing infrastructure for drying waste is utilised by Frumo and the local juice and beer producers also receive a second income by selling their waste instead of paying for its disposal. In this way, small regional businesses are supported. At the same time, the waste is utilised more intensively as it has already been used for food production, thus extending its life cycle. In this example, apple pomace, a by-product of juice production, was used, which is otherwise only utilised in biogas plants as it ferments too quickly for other uses.

USAge

self-healing through heat

The natural and fast-growing raw materials make Frumo not only compostable, but also durable. This means that Frumo can be repaired and recycled under heat. By-products from production can also be reused in this way, meaning that no waste is produced, floors can be laid seamlessly and complex geometries can be modelled.

Users can also repair damage themselves using Frumo granules, an iron and baking paper, which is quicker, easier and cheaper than disposing of old furniture and buying new. Partial repairs are also easier than conventional floor repairs involving clearing and sanding. This extends the life cycle and reduces the consumption of resources. Emissions from repair and disposal services are saved and it contributes to the reduction of harmful materials in the furniture industry.

Mouldable

modelling of complex geometries

Repairable

partial heating enables seamless repairs of deep damage and fractures without adhesives, which extends the service life

joinable

breaks and joints between two panels can be joined seamlessly

reusable

production waste and used Frumo products can be both composted and reprocessed into new products, so that no waste is produced

tools

in addition to heating, Frumo can be processed with woodworking tools as usual, for example, sanding, sawing and drilling

Awards

Green Concept Award Nominee 2023 | Creative Conscience Awards Winner 2023 | WAS IST GUT Winner 2023 | Bundespreis Ecodesign Shortlist 2023 | Architecture Masterprize Discovery of the Year 2023 | Isola Design Awards Nominee 2023

Exhibitions

Dutch Design Week, Eindhoven, 2022 | Greener Manufacturing Show, Cologne, 2022 | Material District, Utrecht, 2023 | Dutch Innovation Days, Enschede, 2023 | Interzum, Cologne, 2023

Publications

52 Grad No. 15, 2023 | Green Trend Book No. 10, 2023 | Isola Design Journal | AMP Book, 2023 | WAS IST GUT Book, 2024 | Francq Colors Trend Report Spring/Summer 25