Ask the Cremation Doctor

The Launch of Bio Cremation
November 30, 2011, 7:35 pm
Filed under: Cremation Technology, Green Cremation

Today, we live in a world that encourages us to protect and preserve our natural resources. We are developing lifestyle trends that encourage behavior to lower the individual’s carbon footprint while at the same time reducing greenhouse gases and stabilizing climate change. In addition to lifestyle changes, we must consider what happens at the end of life and that transition back to earth. Environmentally focused end of life practices are growing in popularity and whether it’s a greener burial or greener cremation, we are all called to play a supportive role within our families and communities.

Since we at Matthews launched Bio Cremation (also known as Alkali Hydrolysis), I am always asked what exactly it is?  Bio Cremation is an environmentally focused alternative that replaces the use of flame with the utilization of water, blended with an alkali solution of Potassium Hydroxide (KOH ). The Human body is placed into a specially designed cremation chamber where water and alkali are added, heated and gently circulated over the body, initiating the cremation process.  The use of Alkali Hydrolysis is a proven technology, newly introduced into funeral service as an environmental alternative to traditional flame cremation. Alkali Hydrolysis uses 95% water and 5% potassium hydroxide (KOH). KOH is an alkali (not acid), inorganic compound that is used in numerous health and beauty cosmetics, soft soaps and cleaning supplies you would commonly find at home. This sterile process prevents the release of emissions (carbon monoxide, particulates, mercury). This more eco-friendly process offers distinct environmental advantages even beyond traditional flame cremation. For more information, please visit us on Facebook at and our consumer web site at

Steve Schaal
President – North America Region
Matthews Cremation