Over 150 Years of Service to the Furniture Industry

 Furniture World Logo

IPSA and RRI Complete Pilot Program For Recycling Used Mattresses

Furniture World News on

The International Sleep Products Association (ISPA) announced that it has completed a pilot program with Rubber Recovery, Inc. (RRI), a solid waste recycling business located near Charleston, SC, to test options for processing and recycling large volumes of used mattresses.  ISPA first partnered with RRI last year to see whether the shredding technology it uses to recycle used tires and other materials could be used to process used mattresses.

“Most mattress recycling today is performed exclusively using manual labor.  An efficient mechanized approach is needed to process the volumes of used mattresses that large urban areas will generate,” noted ISPA President Ryan Trainer. “RRI’s expertise in processing other durable products provided us with an excellent opportunity to test whether the shredding technology they use can efficiently separate the spring steel from other mattress components.”

A number of ISPA members contributed resources to help make the testing program a success. Simmons Bedding Company and Park Place Corporation provided hundreds of used mattresses and foundations for use in these tests. Simmons also provided valuable logistical support for staging the delivery of the used units at the shredding plant and simplifying how the products were handled during processing. 

Leggett & Platt contributed four personnel from their quality assurance and engineering departments to document the tests and several foam manufacturers will analyze whether the mixture of shredded foam, fiber and fabric generated from the shredding operation is suitable for making re-bond foam used for carpet padding.  Throughout the process, other mattress manufacturers, recyclers, component suppliers and retailers observed the tests and provided valuable insights into how the RRI process could be adapted to mattress recycling.

“The RRI pilot program is an excellent example of how ISPA and our member companies serve the mattress industry,” said Don Wright, ISPA Chair and Chief Marketing Officer at Wright of Thomasville.  “Proper disposal of used mattresses has been a pressing industry problem for years and the need for a permanent solution is obvious. ISPA is committed to working with mattress manufacturers, industry suppliers, the retail community, government officials, and recycling centers to develop an economically feasible and sustainable solution to this problem. I look forward to seeing the results of this pilot program, and sincerely appreciate all the support we have received from our members.”

Leggett & Platt will draft a report and recommendations on the tests, which ISPA will make available to all members, as well as companies interested in recycling used mattresses.

For more information on the ISPAEarth™ Sustainability Initiative, including its recycling efforts, visit www.sleepproducts.org/sustainability.  To access the mattress recycling directory, visit www.sleepproducts.org/RecyclingFacilities.  

Established in 1915, the International Sleep Products Association (ISPA) is dedicated to protecting and enhancing the growth, profitability and stature of the mattress industry.  As the industry’s trade organization, ISPA represents over 600 mattress manufacturers and suppliers throughout the world.

ISPA provides a wide range of services that benefit its membership.  These include exclusive industry surveys and statistics, advocacy support, educational offerings, the industry’s ISPA EXPO trade show, safety research through its Sleep Products Safety Council, consumer research and education through its Better Sleep Council, BedTimes and Sleep Savvy publications, the ISPAEarth™ Industry Sustainability Initiative, and more.

To learn more, visit www.sleepproducts.org or contact info@sleepproducts.org

Furniture World Magazine-Business solutions for furniture retailers