US sustainable building materials producer Modern Mill, was singled out by the Sustainable Company Awards judges for its sustainable alternative to wood solution, ACRE.
One judge said it "demonstrates innovation in terms of materials, manufacturing, and its environmental impact." Another commented that "this seems to be a great product that is needed to transform the building industry and could help curb deforestation".
Modern Mill's ACRE is made from upcycled rice hulls that it says would otherwise go to landfill. It is blended with a proprietary resin to create boards that can replace wood in most non-structural applications. It is 100% recyclable and produced in a zero-waste manufacturing facility, according to Modern Mill.
In 2022, Modern Mill says ACRE products contributed to saving the equivalent of approximately 44,000 acres of tropical rainforest or 13,000 softwood trees. In the same year, 4,000 tons of rice hulls that were destined for landfill. Modern Mill says this would have taken up approximately the equivalent size of the garbage of a city the size of Cincinnati, Ohio.
Kim Guimond, chief administrative officer and chief marketing officer at Modern Mill, commented: "Our business model proves that businesses can consider the environmental impact of their operations and by doing so achieve important business objectives, like high customer and employee retention, operational efficiencies and shareholder value."