Rethinking Biowaste Supply Chain as Innovation: Case Study on Mycelium-based Products for MUSH Materials

Carolina Tedesco

Student thesis: Master thesis


Purpose The purpose of this thesis is to propose some possible ways on how supply chain managers can support designing a scale-up plan for a bio-waste company. The case firm chosen is MUSH Materials, a start up in the field of mycelium manufacturing. Furthermore, it is a wish of the author to give more visibility to a firm like Mush Materials and others who deal with mycelium production. Research design and Methodology This is an exploratory research, where the author collected qualitative data through a systematic literature review and semi-structured interviews. The approach will be that of a case study, where the role of the author will be that of the observer-as-participant studying the subjects in a set time horizon. Findings The analysis offers an application of Product life cycle, Four Vs and Four Ps framework to the mycelium industry and proceeds to suggest solutions in the phase of Procurement, Distribution, Capacity, Process Design and Performance Management as parts of the structure for a scale-up in the supply chain. The Conclusions are a series of recommendations to the firm and all posterity for each of the most important areas found. There are presented through short-, medium- and longterm solutions Research limitations The author acknowledges the limitations imposed by the researcher’s bias and errors. Academic implications Hence, the ultimate goal of this case study is to investigating Waste Management as a Branch of Environmental Innovation Management: this is in itself a source of innovation. Plus, the use of modularity, as means of scale up through changing the architecture of product and production process. This helps studying Sustainability issues with an Operations Management perspective. This paper precisely offers an example of interlinking Operation management, Sustainability research, and a case study. Empirical implications A case study with context and evidence‐based solutions are what business and society need, and specifically Mush Materials needs to figure out how can be impactful in its business environment. Lastly, this paper represents a “translational research”, turning research results on mycelium into easy‐to‐use practical tools. Future research Future research can be surely done around future applications of mycelium. In particular, conducting a SWOT analysis in other markets can highlight new opportunities for Mush Materials.

EducationsMSc in Supply Chain Management , (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2020
Number of pages105
SupervisorsJuliana Hsuan