An Alternative Container is the term for the typically cardboard box that is required as a minimum by law for cremation. Unfinished wood, pressed wood, or fiberboard can also be used for an alternative container.

This “minimum alternative container” is required to be offered by federal regulation in the FTC Funeral Rule.

This alternative container is important for keeping costs low in cremation since no federal, state, or local laws requires a casket for cremation. Further, any funeral home or crematory you choose as your provider must make an alternative container available.

With the surging interest for green or natural burials, some funeral homes are marketing these cardboard alternative containers as a “green alternative.”

Consumers should seek clarity on the composition of any green burial container being marketed. There are, in fact, many beautiful natural burial containers including those made of sea grass.