Cascade Alliance

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Mattress Recycling

St. Vincent de Paul of Lane County (Oregon) established the world’s first commercially viable mattress recycling business in Oakland, CA in 2000, under the name DR3 Recycling. Today, with operations in Oakland and Woodland, California, and Eugene, Oregon, SVdP processes more than 170,000 mattresses a year and is a world leader in mattress recycling.

SVdP and Cascade Alliance members have set up mattress recycling businesses in six states, and recently were awarded contracts to recycle mattresses under statewide stewardship laws in California and Connecticut.

How Does It Work?
Mattresses and boxsprings are cut open and separated into various components, including cotton, foam, wood and steel. These materials are baled and shipped out for recycling. In 2014, SVdP kept nearly 9.5 million pounds of material out of landfills.

In addition to providing a benefit for the planet, our mattress recycling programs create entry-level jobs for ex-offenders and others who have trouble finding work.

Mattress Recycling Resources

The Product Stewardship Institute started its Mattress Stewardship Initiative in 2010. PSI has some great mattress recycling resources, publications, and news.

The Mattress Recycling Council is a non-profit organization formed by the industry to operate recycling programs in states that have enacted mattress recycling laws. The website has all the latest information on the statewide recycling programs in Rhode Island, Connecticut and California.

Mattress Recycling White Papers

The State of the Mattress Recycling Industry (Prepared by Sophia Bennett for The Cascade Alliance, September 2014)

Mattress and Box Spring Case Study: The Potential Impacts of Extended Producer Responsibility in California on Global Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Emissions (California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery, May 2012)

Statewide Mattress Stewardship Programs

Three states have passed stewardship laws requiring consumers to pay a recycling fee when purchasing a new mattress or box spring: California, Connecticut and Rhode Island. (Connecticut’s program began in May 2015. Programs in California and Rhode Island are expected to begin in 2016.) Five other states are considering similar legislation: New York, Massachusetts, Washington, Arizona, Kansas.

The state of California’s Mattress Stewardship Program.  The consumer fee is $11 per unit.

The state of Connecticut’s Mattress Stewardship Program. The consumer fee $9 per unit.

The state of Rhode Island’s Mattress Stewardship Law. The consumer fee is $10 per unit.

(Note: Until the stewardship programs are well underway, it is difficult to estimate the total number of mattresses that will be collected for diversion and deconstruction.)