We’ve talked about eco-friendly golf balls before (read here), but a new set of balls are hitting the market – this time, made of lobster shells.

Golf balls are an eco-hazard, even if it’s not something we readily think about. But every year, hundreds of Lobster Golf Ball 300x200 Team creates lobster shell golf ballsthousands of golf balls are manufactured, most of which are made from petrochemicals like Surlyn or urethane.

And what happens to them? They often end up in forests and waterways, and lay there for years and years.

However, the answer is as easy as making them from a renewable source. After all, we’ve seen that before. A University of Maine professor and student teamed up to make planet-friendly golf balls from lobster shells.

Professor David Neivandt and golfer/undergrad Alex Caddell developed a ball made from the byproduct of the lobster-canning industry.

Maine Today reported that the research team has discovered a way to produce golf balls using the empty shells of lobster. The best part? It costs just about 19 cents per ball (considering, for you golfers out there, you’re paying upwards of about four dollars already).

The balls take their eco-friendliness a step further – they are biodegradable. Because of this, they are designed and used for the beach and on cruise ships, where you don’t plan on seeing that ball again.

The bonus of these balls are that they are reusing an ingredient that would just be wasted, and that they are biodegradable, too.

The University of Maine has filed a provisional patent for the lobster shell recipe. It can also be used to make other decomposable products, such as planters and surveying stakes.

Image courtesy of The University of Maine