Biotechnology company makes leather from mycelium
In a huge boost to the local economy, the SC Governor’s Office, SC Department of Commerce, and the Union County Development Board announced the identity of Project Vidar. A company named MycoWorks will be coming to the county. They will be located in the spec building at 260 Midway Drive, near Tiger Companies, which is located in the old ESAB building. MycoWorks has committed to a $107 million investment and 400 new jobs in Union County.
They are a biotechnology company that specializes in mycelium-grown materials for use as sustainable, luxury-quality leather alternatives. Mycelium is the network of threads from which mushrooms grow. The fast-growing fibers produce materials that are used for packaging, clothing, food, and construction—everything from leather alternative to plant-based steak to scaffolding for growing organs.
The company was established in 2013. Their Fine Mycelium process produces materials including Reishi, which is a globally recognized breakthrough in materials science. It mimics the performance of animal leathers and lowers environmental impacts. It offers creative solutions and new design possibilities for fashion and luxury brands while offering relief to supply chain constraints.
The new facility in Union will increase the company’s capacity to meet the fashion and luxury industries’ growing demand for its materials. Operations are expected to be online in early 2023. Individuals interested in joining the MycoWorks team should email firstname.lastname@example.org.
In talking about the announcement, Supervisor Frank Hart touted not just the investment and job figures, but also the way the company will help diversify the county’s economy:
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City Administrator Joe Nichols released a statement, saying, “We are excited to begin 2022 by welcoming this innovative new company to our community. Each job created provides a better opportunity for our residents. We look forward to welcoming the Mycoworks team and assisting them as they become operational.”
Union County Development Board Chair Andrena Powell-Baker said this: “The impact that MycoWorks is expected to have on Union County will be transformational and refreshing. Working in collaboration with their team over the past several months has been an exciting and remarkable experience for our local team including Lockhart Power, the City of Union and Union County. We welcome this innovative company to our community and look forward to locking arms with them every step of the way.”