A startup company, TômTex, has developed a new leather alternative, one made out of shrimp shells but with the look and feel of genuine leather. Unlike other leather alternatives made from petroleum-derived materials, the material used by TômTex is biodegradable and free of fossil fuel. It is made of chitosan, the elementary unit of crustacean shells, mushroom cell walls, and insect exoskeletons. This abundance makes it one of the most easily available biopolymers on earth. Chitosan is cheap and easy to source (a waste byproduct of the seafood industry), making it an affordable option for TômTex.
Shrimp Vs. Plant-Based Leather
There are many plant-based alternatives to leather in the market today, but there are certain reasons why shrimp-based is one step ahead. Compared to other leather alternatives in the market, like apple, grape, cactus, and mushroom leather, TômTex’s material has no binders or finishes. It contains no fossil-fuel-based plastics. It is an environmentally friendly mono-material free from harmful substances, which can be found in some plant-based leather alternatives.
Chitosan-based leather stands out because of its biodegradable nature. The material can be poured into molds, stamped, 3D printed, and even mixed with natural pigment. It is also affordable and semi-breathable, which makes it a perfect option for clothing and accessories. The material is so non-toxic that it is even edible. However, TômTex’s cofounder Ross McBee has tried it and says it does not taste that good.
Vegan or Not?
Although not technically vegan, as it is a waste byproduct of the seafood industry, Chitosan is still a more conscious and environmentally friendly alternative to cow leather. TômTex also offers a mushroom-based version for brands that prioritize the vegan aspect, although it is a pricier option than the shrimp shell-based material. With the global market for leather worth almost $243 billion, TômTex’s affordable, durable, beautiful, and biodegradable material has the potential to disrupt the animal-free leather market and become the leather alternative of the future.
Tim Tebow Has Left the NFL After Just One Preseason Game
Tim Tebow has had a long and varied career in professional sports, and it now appears to be over after he was released by the Jacksonville Jaguars. He commented on Twitter that he was thankful for the highs and lows, the opportunities, and the setbacks. The 34-year-old quarterback also wrote that he had never wanted to make decisions out of fear of failure and was grateful for the chance to have pursued one of his dreams. He then thanked the Jaguars and everyone who has supported him in his journey.
Tim Tebow Is Retiring After a Short Return to the NFL
Tim Tebow started his career as a quarterback and had a successful few years in college football during his time in Florida. While his freewheeling style was perfect for college football, it was not so well received in the professional game. In 2010, he was drafted by the Denver Broncos, and his last NFL regular-season game was in 2012 for the New York Jets.
Tim Tebow Also Had a Career In Baseball But Did Not Play In the Major Leagues
After he was no longer interested in the NFL, Tebow tried his hand at baseball, making a minor league deal and playing for the New York Mets in 2016. Most experts believed he was given that chance because of his celebrity status rather than his ability to play baseball, but despite that, he was reported to be quite popular with teammates. Later in 2019, he played for the Mets Triple-A affiliate in Syracuse, but it quickly became clear he could not step up his game to a higher level and never played for teams in the major leagues.
After he announced his retirement from baseball in February, Tim Tebow decided to return to football in May. This time, he was going to be catching passes rather than throwing them as a tight end for the Jacksonville Jaguars and under his former coach, Urban Meyer. However, Tebow struggled badly during his one and only preseason game for the Jaguars. Now, it appears that the closest he will get to participate in a football game in the future is as a part of his media career with ESPN.