GRASSBuilt Bamboo Engineered Materials: America’s First Bamboo Industry
Did you know that the U.S. is the #1 importer of all bamboo products, representing 36% of global consumption annually? Bamboo has quickly skyrocketed to the forefront of the green building materials industry, due to its incredible durability, beauty, resilience, and renewability. You may be surprised to learn that many varieties of bamboo could easily be grown in commercial quantities on American soil. And since bamboo is virtually the most sustainable wood-grade resource on the planet, it makes perfect sense that American building material manufacturers make the connection and start a bamboo revolution — and you can be a part of it! Choosing GRASSBuilt means supporting the New American Bamboo Revolution (NABER). The GRASSBuilt team dreams of sourcing all bamboo locally rather than importing bamboo from foreign countries. In the company’s own words, “this is the beginning of an American legacy we will proudly pass down for generations to come.”
Celebrating the True Meaning of “Made in America”
Unfortunately, the “Made in America” label has lost some of its meaning over time. A product labeled as “Made in America” may have only been assembled here, while most of its parts were made on foreign soil. GRASSBuilt challenges this notion and holds the “Made in America” label to the absolute highest standards. GRASSBuilt products are 100% products of the Americas, giving jobs to farmers, agricultural supply workers, manufacturers, researchers, and laborers nationwide. The company supports local communities with net-new taxes and net-new jobs, with the goal of helping “Made in America” mean something again.
Responsibility & Sustainability
GRASSBuilt offers an alternative to manufactured wood — bamboo engineered materials for every project and every size, with incredible strength and performance, at a highly competitive price. But even more importantly, GRASSBuilt focuses on responsible business practices and sustainable manufacturing. In fact, GRASS is an earth-minded acronym, standing for Green Renewable Affordable Sustainable Systems.
A large percentage of the bamboo used for GRASSBuilt products is salvaged, meaning it’s sourced from equatorial regions with high amounts of indigenous bamboo not being commercially leveraged and largely going to waste. Nationwide GRASSBuilt facilities create jobs, offset foreign imports, and answer regional building material needs — all while taking the pressure off of unnecessary deforestation practices.
Benefits of Bamboo
- Bamboo is the #1 most rapidly-renewable and sustainable bio-fiber in the world.
- Bamboo requires no replanting — yet preserves and creates new topsoils.
- Bamboo also enhances nutrients in topsoils.
- Commercial bamboo crops do not require agro-chemicals (which create toxic runoffs).
- Bamboo absorbs more CO2 and releases 35% more oxygen into the atmosphere than trees.
No Chemicals Required
Most crops require use of agrochemicals and fertilizers to produce in large commercial quantities. These chemicals can have some seriously detrimental effects — like contaminating groundwater, rivers, streams, and coastal areas. The excess nutrients from the fertilizers in our waterways can create algae blooms and severely degrade natural systems. And when the algae die, the decomposition process removes oxygen from the water, causing further harm to the environment.
On the flip side, bamboo can easily be produced commercially without the use of these harmful chemicals. Once established, bamboo requires no additional fertilizers or agrochemicals to thrive — and has a faster regrowth rate than any other plant. When harvested, bamboo will grow new shoots from its rhizome system without the need for replanting, maintenance, or cultivation.
Deforestation is a major problem in today’s day and age. The practice is rapidly clearing Earth’s forests on a massive scale, and disrupting global ecosystems in the process.
Unlike trees, bamboo is self-renewing, and will regrow after being harvested — offsetting the unwanted clearcutting of old-growth forests. Additionally, bamboo fibers are extremely unique and versatile. Bamboo feedstocks are used for fuel, paper, edible food-products, textile fibers, biochar, organic extracts, and building materials (like GRASSBuilt bamboo engineered materials).
Protection From Erosion
Bamboo rhizomes produce a network of roots that bind the soil and prevent erosion. The rhizome system is a natural filter that removes toxins from soil and water and draws water closer to the surface, raising and enforcing the water table. This creates additional, healthy topsoil. Bamboo and its rhizome system enhance nutrients in topsoils — strikingly different than annual crops, which strip nutrients from topsoils.
Bamboo and LEED
Bamboo is a woody, evergreen, giant grass. And, the same as normal grass, is just one giant rhizome system. It simply grows back after being cut, so it requires no replanting. Bamboo is also the fastest growing plant on the planet, reaching its full diameter and height within the first three months during shooting season. These remarkable attributes are what give bamboo a “rapidly renewable material” designation within the LEED framework.