Business & Tech

5 non-traditional things to do with your body after you die

UNDATED: In this undated handout from LifeGem, A diamond made from cremated remains sits in a setting. LifeGem extracts carbon from the ashes of cremated human remains, uses super hot ovens to transform it into graphite, then compresses it into yellow or blue diamonds at a cost of $2700 to $20,000. (Photo by )

LifeGem/Getty Images

A diamond made from cremated remains.

Traditional burials are fading in popularity, falling to the wayside in favor of more alternative trends.

From diamonds made from cremated remains to eco-friendly interments, the $20 billion funeral industry is being reshaped, creating opportunities for the entrepreneurially minded.

Advertisement

With death becoming less of a taboo subject, here are some less traditional ways to think about having done to your body for the afterlife:

-- Being made into diamonds. Several services offer to use the carbon from your body to create a wearable diamond. The service generally starts at a few thousand dollars, and can range into the tens of thousands. One company head previously told NPR that it takes about a pound of ashes to make a single diamond.

The Neptune Society's Memorial Reef, a representation of the Lost City of Atlantis located off the coast of Miami, is an underwater mausoleum for cremated remains. Families can scuba dive at the reef, a growing habitat for marine life, to visit their loved ones.

Neptune Society

The Neptune Society's Memorial Reef.

Get Talking Points in your inbox:
An afternoon recap of the day’s most important business news, delivered weekdays.
Thank you for signing up! Sign up for more newsletters here

-- Get folded into a manmade reef. Off the coast of Florida, a manmade reef serves as an underwater mausoleum. Located about three miles off the Miami coast, cremated remains are fused with the materials used to build the Neptune Memorial Reef, and are marked by a memorial plaque. Many who choose this option generally “celebrate a love of the sea” and want to “help counter reef destruction by contributing” to a new reef, according to the company.

-- Send your remains into space. For those with a love of outer space, consider taking the extraterrestrial route. Starting at $4,995, at least one service offers to fly remains either into Earth’s orbit, to the moon, or into deep space. (If you have other penultimate plans, and less money, there are also options to have ashes take a joyride in space before returning back to the planet).

14funeral- Coeio, based in Brooklyn and founded by MIT graduate Jae Rhim Lee, makes a burial suit embedded with mushrooms to help speed decomposition and rid the body of toxins. A carpenter in Woburn is signed up to become the first person to be buried in the suit. (Coeio)

Coeio

Coeio makes a burial suit embedded with mushrooms to help speed decomposition and rid the body of toxins.

-- Wearing a suit of mushrooms. In Woburn, a carpenter with a degenerative brain condition is set to be buried in a suit embedded with mushrooms, which will neutralize the toxins in his body as it decomposes into the earth. Coeio, based in Brooklyn and founded by MIT graduate Jae Rhim Lee, offers such suits — for both people and pets. The suit for humans costs $1,500; a casket liner is $750, according to the Coeio website.

Advertisement

-- Turn your corpse into compost. In Seattle, plans are underway for a facility to turn corpses into compost; in Italy, a pair of designers is working on a biodegradable burial seed pod that will allow a person’s decaying body to provide nutrients for a tree planted on top of it.

Loading comments...
You're reading  1 of 5 free articles.
Get UNLIMITED access for only 99¢ per week Subscribe Now >
You're reading1 of 5 free articles.Keep scrolling to see more articles recomended for you Subscribe now
We hope you've enjoyed your 5 free articles.
Continue reading by subscribing to Globe.com for just 99¢.
 Already a member? Log in Home
Subscriber Log In

We hope you've enjoyed your 5 free articles'

Stay informed with unlimited access to Boston’s trusted news source.

  • High-quality journalism from the region’s largest newsroom
  • Convenient access across all of your devices
  • Today’s Headlines daily newsletter
  • Subscriber-only access to exclusive offers, events, contests, eBooks, and more
  • Less than 25¢ a week
Marketing image of BostonGlobe.com
Marketing image of BostonGlobe.com
Already a subscriber?
Your city. Your stories. Your Globe.
Yours FREE for two weeks.
Enjoy free unlimited access to Globe.com for the next two weeks.
Limited time only - No credit card required!
BostonGlobe.com complimentary digital access has been provided to you, without a subscription, for free starting today and ending in 14 days. After the free trial period, your free BostonGlobe.com digital access will stop immediately unless you sign up for BostonGlobe.com digital subscription. Current print and digital subscribers are not eligible for the free trial.
Thanks & Welcome to Globe.com
You now have unlimited access for the next two weeks.
BostonGlobe.com complimentary digital access has been provided to you, without a subscription, for free starting today and ending in 14 days. After the free trial period, your free BostonGlobe.com digital access will stop immediately unless you sign up for BostonGlobe.com digital subscription. Current print and digital subscribers are not eligible for the free trial.