Biodegradable Turtles

The Passages® Biodegradable Paper Turtles are hand-crafted from recycled paper using non-toxic glues. The turtles are available in two sizes. The adult size will accommodate a full set of human remains, and the mini turtle will accommodate roughly two or three tablespoons of cremated remains.

The turtles are designed to float briefly before sinking. The time that the turtle takes to sink will depend on the weight of remains inside and local water conditions. Once the turtle sinks, it will biodegrade naturally over time.

The mini turtles are available in Natural and Newsprint, while the adult size is only available in Natural. Since the turtles are crafted by hand, the size, shape and color of each may vary. Newsprint turtles will vary considerably in appearance and will contain legible newspaper print.

Produced in North America by skilled artisans. The purchase of a turtle contributes to the preservation of a traditional local art form, and the artists producing these beautiful turtles are paid a fair wage in local workshop environments.

An editorial about one family’s experience with the turtle urn was featured in the Montecito Journal. You can read it here.

Turtle Urns are made by hand and will vary in appearance. These urns meet federal regulations requiring all containers used for burials at sea be 100% biodegradable. Federal regulations also require that burial occurs no closer than 3 nautical miles from shore.


Hand Crafted from Renewable Resources
This product is handmade and uses renewable materials like willow, bamboo, or something similar. This ensures a small environmental footprint from the very beginning of the product’s inception.

Water Biodegradable
This product will biodegrade in as little as 4 hours when placed into water. Federal regulations should be followed when performin a water burial.

Earth Biodegradable
This product will biodegrade when placed into the earth.

Green Burial Council Certified
The Green Burial Council is the leading environmental certification organization setting the standard for green burial in North America. They offer environmental certification for funeral homes, cemeteries and product manufacturers in the industry.

TSA Compliant
This product adheres to travel requirements set in place by the Transportation Security Administration of America and is suitable for “in-cabin” airline transportation on a commercial flight.

Passages® eco-friendly funeral products give families the opportunity to honor a loved one after their passing with a smaller environmental footprint. We believe that, especially when a person valued sustainability during their life, it is important to have the option for a greener end-of-life ritual. Whether a family chooses to bury or cremate, our caskets and carriers are dignified and suitable to do so in an eco-friendly manner. If cremation is chosen, our biodegradable urns offer a variety of options for ceremonies that return the cremated remains to the earth.

Adult Turtle:
17"L x 22"W x 5"H
202 Cubic Inches
Mini Turtle:
7.25"L x 9.5"W x 1.75"H
5 Cubic Inches

Gift tree tubesPassages suggests offering memorial trees as the perfect complement to any biodegradable urn or scattering tube. Whether it is planted where the cremated remains of a loved one are scattered or buried, or in your garden at home, the trees provide a lasting and living memorial. As part of The Natural Choice® Memorial Tree Program, a numbered certificate can be used to redeem a 12” tree sapling that is appropriate to your climate and guaranteed for a year to grow. Read more about the program and how it works.

Simply complete the form on our website, including your certificate number, and a tree will be mailed to the address you provide. Memorial trees are a wonderful way to remember a loved one that, if you choose, can grow from the same soil in which a loved one’s remains were laid to rest. Because families receive a sapling instead of seeds, the hardest part of the tree’s life has passed and there is no worry of a seed not germinating. 

Each Passages adult casket comes with a free Memorial Tree Certificate that can be redeemed for a live tree. 

Memorial Petals are also available and are a perfect addition to a burial at sea or other ceremonies.

Passages International® is a designer and wholesale distributor of green funeral products.

If you have recently lost a loved one or are pre-planning a funeral and are interested in purchasing Passages products, we recommend finding an AGF partner provider at www.agreenerfuneral.org.

If there is not an official AGF provider near you, any funeral home, cemetery, or crematory can purchase our products. Write us through our contact form or call us at (505) 830-2500 and we will be happy to connect you with someone in your area who can help you. In most cases we are able to ship small packages as fast as FedEx Overnight, and we will do everything we can to make sure you are served in a timely manner.

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