The Future: Human Compost

I was shocked to learn in my own city of Auburn, Washington that they are making this a reality. As soon as April or May, the Return Home, the first, large-scale human composting facility, ever built in the world, will open a 11,500 square foot warehouse with 72 vessels that transforms 72 bodies per month into soil at 30 times the rate of ground burial.

Apparently, this has been a desired alternative idea instead of pumping formaldehyde into loved ones, encasing them in a concrete vault, and burying them in a six foot hole. Or reducing them to ashes. The process uses a vessel or pod-8 feet long by 3.5 feet. Workers first place organic bulk material of alfalfa, straw, and sawdust into it, then add the body inside the pod. The mix and the body reaches a temperature near 140 degrees. It takes the microbes in the body and puts them on hyper-drive, which works faster than normal composting.

The Return Home facility takes the body from either the family or funeral home. They deal with the transportation.

Photo by Eva Elijas on

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