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Old mattresses set to rebound with new recycling programme

Published: 27 April 2017

27 April, 2017

Old mattresses set to rebound with new recycling programme 

Auckland Council has helped fund the establishment of an innovative mattress recycle scheme through its Waste Minimisation Innovation Fund (WMIF) 

Project Stewardship specialist 3R Group is launching Rebound, a programme which encourages mattress manufacturers and retailers to take responsibility for the disposal of their products.

Both consumers and businesses will be able to drop off old mattresses at Auckland Council resource recovery centres and transfer stations free of charge. Businesses can also arrange direct delivery to a local processing centre. The mattresses will be dismantled into raw materials, such as steel, foam, plastic and fabric which are either recycled or reused. 

 “300,000 mattresses are sent to landfill every year in New Zealand – if stacked this pile of unwanted mattresses would reach to the edge of space! This 8100 tonnes of waste costs $14.5 million to landfill every year”, says 3R Group Chief Executive Adele Rose.

Councillor Penny Hulse, Chair of the Environment and Community Committee, says “this is an amazing opportunity to reduce waste to landfill and a solution we’re proud to be supporting. The council bears a proportion of mattress disposal costs through our inorganics collection scheme and sadly through clearing illegal dumping”. 

In landfills, unwanted mattresses disrupt the methane capture process and get tangled around machinery.

More than 70 per cent of the component materials in the average mattress can be extracted and recycled. 

“It is great to see a major industry sector collaborating together on such a pressing issue. Consumers are becoming more aware of how companies are addressing sustainability and it’s pleasing to see a proactive approach in regard to recycling materials,” says Cllr Hulse.

Currently, the programme is in its pilot phase in selected areas in Auckland. Companies 3R are currently in discussions with include AH Beard, Bedpost, Big Save Furniture, Beds R Us, Harvey Norman, Red Cross, Sealy, Sleepyhead, Sleepmaker and Tempurpedic.

To find out more about the Rebound programme visit

About The Waste Minimisation and Innovation Fund

The Waste Minimisation and Innovation Fund (WMIF), which is funded through a levy of $10 per tonne on all waste sent to landfill, supports a variety of new activities which reduce waste.

The WMIF fund provides up to $500,000 a year to seed innovative waste solutions from businesses, iwi/Maori, education and community groups.