Leading the Way: Providing Statewide No-Cost Collection Networks

Successful statewide mattress recycling programs need strong and diverse collection networks that are accessible to all types of consumers. In California, Connecticut and Rhode Island the Mattress Recycling Council’s (MRC) Bye Bye Mattress program has a proven model. In these states, which passed legislation establishing an industry-led statewide mattress recycling program, MRC leverages the existing solid waste infrastructure and public and private entities to orchestrate networks that have collected more than 8 million mattresses since 2015. That translates to more than 300 million pounds of material diverted from the waste stream. 

MRC collaborates with local governments, solid waste facilities, waste haulers, nonprofit organizations and small- and minority-owned businesses, to create a collection footprint that spans rural and urban areas and provides both households and commercial sources with multiple options for disposing of a mattress so that it can be recycled. This is leading to reduced illegal mattress dumping too. MRC’s data indicates that zip codes with collection sites and collection events, as well as communities that accept mattresses through their curbside bulky item collection programs experience less illegal mattress dumping.

Additionally, MRC’s method of building a collection network supports local jobs. MRC contracts with businesses to provide and transport collection containers across each state program. MRC also works with nonprofit organizations that focus on putting people back to work.

MRC’s Bye Bye Mattress program makes it easy for residents to recycle

In California, more than 95% of residents live within 15 miles of a Bye Bye Mattress collection location. These are typically the local landfill or a public works yard, but there is a growing number of nonprofit organizations, mattress retailers and other businesses joining the network. On the east coast, nearly every Connecticut and Rhode Island resident can drop off a mattress at their town transfer station or another nearby participating location. In all of our program states we work alongside local officials, civic groups and volunteer organizations to provide collection events that bring our program’s services to targeted areas.

We recognize that not everyone can transport or drop off a mattress, so we also collect mattresses from waste haulers that operate curbside collection programs and retailers that provide no-cost take back when delivering new mattresses. The number of participating haulers and retailers grows each year.

Because MRC has connected seamlessly with pre-existing waste infrastructure, it is easy for residents to use the Bye Bye Mattress program.

Our Commercial Volume Program assists businesses and organizations with mattress recycling 

For entities like mattress retailers, hotels, universities, hospitals, military bases or others seeking to recycle many mattresses at once, we offer service through our Commercial Volume Program. This program allows these businesses and organizations to drop off large volumes or smaller loads at participating recycling facilities or select locations. If eligible these entities may also have the option to receive a trailer to aggregate large volumes. MRC then provides for no-cost transport and recycling of the discarded mattresses.

Mattresses from commercial sources account for approximately 20% of the total volume that MRC collects for recycling each year. Providing multiple methods for businesses and organizations to recycle is the key to keeping used mattresses out of landfills.

Join our network and start recycling your mattresses

We are proud of the progress we have made serving communities and keeping mattresses out of landfills through collection networks. We have collaborated with public and private entities to build strong recycling networks that support local jobs, reduce illegal mattress dumping and make valuable material available for use in new products. When it comes to mattress recycling, our successful statewide collection networks are just one example of how we #LeadTheWay.

If you would like to become a collection site, host a collection event or use our Commercial Volume Program, we would like to hear from you. Use MattressRecyclingCouncil.org/contact-us to reach us.

To learn how to dispose of a mattress for recycling in your area, visit ByeByeMattress.com.