Your Green Life: "Mattress Recycling Program"

By KBJR News 1

November 1, 2012 Updated Nov 1, 2012 at 9:27 AM CDT

Duluth, MN
Already 7 years have past and the money making green machine is still running strong. The Goodwill in Duluth has a unique money maker that's also doing right by the environment.

"What it's done for them is it's made it possible for them to generate revenue from their steel product that they were struggling to find a market for." Said Clint Deraas, the President at OLAF Industries.

The big springs from mattresses were actually costing more money to ship than they were worth, so this unique machine was brought in to solve the problem. Every scrap from a mattress is recycled, and that's where the NRRI put a green foot in.

June Kallestad with NRRI said, "We have been called in by the MPCA to find markets for the elements in the mattress because it was really important no to just separate the components but you had to find something profitable to do with them."

From the foam, to the wood, everything is utilized from a mattress and nothing goes to waste. And there is no shortage of old mattresses for this machine to chop up.

"40 million mattresses are sold in the United States every year and I think it behooves us to recycle these products when we can and certainly now this machine makes it possible for them to generate revenue from it and makes them a stand–alone profitable business." Said Deraas.

Valerie Clark with Goodwill told me, "We've recycled over 100,000 mattresses during the life of this program."

There are about 25 cubes of steel per ton and Clint says that, depending on the price of steel, they are getting between 2–hundred–80 and 3–hundred–50 dollars per ton.
Materials Recovery Center, will take mattresses for a seven dollar fee to be recycled.

Meteorologist Adam Lorch