With cremation so popular, the rise in products to accommodate cremains has also expanded. We at Ashes on the Sea handle the urns families purchase from you, the funeral home. Many families choose a biodegradable urn – either their religion or beliefs are such that all of the cremains must go in at once, or, sometimes the family just cannot bear to ‘see’ the cremains.
In any case, what the families are expecting from this purchase – a peaceful descent into the sea – can become a horrific ordeal trying to find out how to sink the urn! These families are usually very shocked and disappointed.
Why is this happening? What can you do to help ensure this doesn’t occur with yourfamilies?
Learn About the Specific Product
All biodegradable urns are not made equal.Some bio urns are only made for earth burial, and will not disintegrate for long periods of time when placed on the water. Make sure that the family is purchasing an urn specifically made for ocean burial.
Use the Right Bag!
This is the most common problem we find with biodegradable urns. Someone at the funeral facility has not transferred the cremains into the biodegradable bag that usually accompanies the urn. The whole regular plastic bag has been placed into the urn. Because the urn is closed and sealed, no one knows that the internal bag is real plastic, and as a result the urn does not sink.
The effect on the family is quite shocking. We have to pull the urn out of the water and open it up to find out why it is not sinking. The urn is usually starting to fall apart at this stage. We then have to take the plastic bag out and empty the cremains from the bag. This is what the family was trying to avoid by purchasing the urn.
Please Share This With Your Team
While YOU may find it obvious that a biodegradable bag must be used inside a bio urn, it may be good to remind all of your employees and members of your team to double-check the inside bag. It is an easy mistake to make.
We decided to write this piece after another biodegradable urn (The Nu Salt Urn – see above) failed to sink today off the coast of San Diego during a burial at sea. We waited for an hour, but it would not sink.
We are hoping that we can all work together and get the word out to help make this a more pleasant experience for the families we serve!