Connecticut approves MRC mattress-recycling plan

mattress recycling council logoOn Dec. 31, the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection approved the Connecticut Mattress Stewardship Plan developed by the Mattress Recycling Council, a non-profit created by the International Sleep Products Association. Connecticut is the first state to work with MRC to implement a statewide mattress-recycling program.

The Connecticut recycling plan, which begins May 1, requires that retailers add a $9 recycling fee to each new or renovated mattress and foundation sold to Connecticut consumers. The recycling fee will appear as a separate line item on the consumer’s receipt. Retailers must remit these fees to MRC. The fees will pay for contractors to collect and recycle mattresses.

“Today, Connecticut has taken another step towards reaffirming its leadership in materials management,” said Robert Klee, DEEP commissioner. “I applaud the mattress industry for working with us to develop a solution that protects consumers, works efficiently with our existing municipal solid waste networks and values the recovery of the natural resources contained in the thousands of mattresses that are buried in landfills, lost to incineration or abandoned in our communities each year.”

This program will divert mattresses from the solid-waste stream to recyclers who will extract valuable resources, including steel, foam and cotton. It also minimizes recycling costs to consumers because the statewide program creates an economy of scale.

“Responsibly managing discarded mattresses benefits consumers and the environment, and it’s most effective when done on a large scale,” said Ryan Trainer, MRC president. “Through this law, the mattress industry has developed a self-sustaining infrastructure for handling these products.”

MRC estimates that at least 20 million mattresses and foundations are discarded each year in the United States.

Connecticut Mattress Stewardship Plan FAQ

How can consumers recycle a mattress?
Consumers will continue to dispose of mattresses through traditional methods such as municipal collection or drop-off, or retailer take-back when a new mattress is delivered. These mattresses, which previously went to a landfill or waste-to-energy facility, can now be recycled. Consumers also may drop off mattresses at designated recycling facilities at no charge.

What types of mattresses does the program accept for recycling?
Any mattress or foundation discarded by Connecticut consumers is eligible for recycling.

What sleep products are excluded from the recycling program?

  • Severely damaged, wet, twisted, frozen or soiled mattresses or box springs
  • Mattresses or foundations infested with bedbugs
  • Mattress pads or toppers
  • Sleeping bags
  • Pillows
  • Car beds
  • Juvenile products (i.e., carriage, basket, dressing table, stroller, playpen, infant carrier, lounge pad, or crib bumpers)
  • Crib and bassinet mattresses
  • Waterbeds or camping air mattresses
  • Foldout sofa beds
  • Futons and furniture

For more information, visit the MRC website.

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