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Rotomolded burial vaults have cost, weight advantage

Plastic manufacturers are digging into the funeral industry by introducing plastic burial vaults to the market. Oft...


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February 24, 2005 by Canadian Plastics

Plastic manufacturers are digging into the funeral industry by introducing plastic burial vaults to the market. Often cemeteries require a burial vault or liner to enclose a casket in a grave to prevent the ground from caving in as the casket deteriorates. New rotomolded polyethylene vaults are lighter than their concrete counterparts, and cheaper than steel vaults.<br>
Goria Corporation, a North Carolina-based company, debuted Eonian burial vault products at the National Funeral Directors Association’s Expo in October 2004, but had been developing this patented product line, which features double wall plastic burial vaults, for nine years. <br>
President Pierre A. Goria II says his company is the first to introduce a plastic burial vault that compares to concrete, the current industry-leading material, but is nearly 2000% lighter. The Eonian vault weighs less than 150 lb. Because of this significant feature, the vault can be set up with less equipment, less men and less damage to the cemetery. <br>
Since introducing his products, Goria says he has been trying to keep up with the “overwhelming” response from the market. “My hope is I’ll be able to keep up with the (manufacturing) demand until I get another plant up and running.” He says he plans to expand by franchising his idea out to concrete vault manufacturers.<br>
Everest Plastik Inc., which operates in Tracadie-Sheila, NB, has also recognized the need to offer alternative solutions to the funeral industry. In January 2005, Everest Plastik introduced its newly designed Great Spirit II plastic burial vault, which can be nested to maximize the use of shipping and storage space and features an easy top-to-base interlocking system.<br>
There are also economic forces acting in favor of plastic vaults right now, says Goria.<br>
“There was no better time for us to introduce this product because concrete prices went up [last year] by at least 10%, and steel rose even more than concrete,” he explains. “If you compare our basic burial vault to others on the market, a funeral director would sell ours for US$1200. The comparable concrete model would sell for over US$3000.”<br>