Memorial Parks: Cemeteries of the Future
There are thousands of cemeteries in the U.S. that account for tens of thousands of square miles of space. Not only do cemeteries consume a significant amount of land, they also consume other precious resources, including wood (for caskets), concrete (for vaults), and embalming fluid. Each year in the U.S. alone, cemeteries consume over 30 million board feet of hardwoods, 1.5 million tons of concrete and over 5 million gallons of embalming fluid, which occasionally leaks into the local groundwater.
For the first time ever, more than half of Americans are choosing cremation over burial, and the National Funeral Director’s Association, or NFDA, projects that this number will surge to 70% of Americans choosing cremation by 2030.
Now, how will this new surge of Americans choosing cremation want to be memorialized? What will their families do with their cremated remains?
We asked Mark Brewer, President of Biolife, LLC, a company focused on developing unique biodegradable urns and other products catering to the cremation market, his opinion, “The U.S. is experiencing a surge in cremation. A lot of this has to do with the affordability factor and people who are less traditional. Along with this cremation trend, people are looking for unique ways to be memorialized. With this movement, we’re experiencing a surge in demand for our bio urn that grows a memorial tree called The Living Urn and Eco-Scattering, our environmentally friendly line of biodegradable bamboo scattering urns.”
Brewer continues, “In line with the surge in demand for The Living Urn and Eco-Scattering, we’re also seeing Memorial Gardens open up in areas throughout the country. These are places where families can plant our Bio Urn with their loved one’s cremated remains and have it grow into a tree and be cared for by the staff. We recently partnered with a 130 acre memorial park in Florida, along with others in Washington and California. It’s a great solution for people who may not have a yard to plant their loved one’s bio urn or who may move frequently and don’t prefer to plant the bio urn in a pot and continuously take it with them. We see these memorial parks as the future of cemeteries and a beautiful solution that will actually give back to future generations.