Igloo debuts biodegradable cooler

Coming exclusively to REI store shelves this month is Igloo’s latest contribution to the “green” products parade: Recool coolers. Igloo Recool coolers are made from recycled tree pulp and provide an alternative to Styrofoam coolers, which, the company said, “typically end up in landfills.”

Igloo (Katy, TX) calls the Recool coolers “the world’s first eco-sensitive cooler made from 100% biodegradable materials.” Priced at $10, the coolers go on sale at REI stores on May 1, with a wider retail rollout set for later this summer.

Igloo's ReCool cooler
The Recool is “the world’s first eco-sensitive cooler made from 100% biodegradable materials,” according to Igloo.

The Recool is a hard-sided cooler made from a mix of paraffin wax and recycled tree pulp. With a capacity of 16 quarts, it promises to retain ice for up to 12 hours, making it a good pick for quick day trips, said the company. The body features built-in handles as well as a lid with four cup holders. Igloo said that the product can stand up to bumps and drops better than Styrofoam. It can hold 75 pounds and will contain water for five days without leaking, said the company.

Questions submitted to Igloo regarding the product's biodegradability timeframe and under what environmental conditions, as well as whether it is compostable or recyclable (given the wax additive in the material), were not answered at the time of writing.

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