One of the biggest challenges for the hospitality sector is reducing waste. In addition to regular waste, restaurants, hotels and other hospitality segments have food waste, packaging waste, used mattresses, bottles and cans, textile waste and other special waste to dispose of.
To help reduce the amount of waste sent to landfill, companies like Hilton Hotels & Resorts—a global brand of full-service hotels and resorts—are developing partnerships and creating sustainable and effective initiatives.
Recently, Hilton partnered with Global Sustainable Solutions (GSS) to launch its Mattress Recycling Initiative, which complies with California Law SB 254 and ensures that the brand’s mattresses and box springs are recycled and not sold to a refurbisher to be re-covered and sold again. The law, which went into effect on September 30, 2015, requires that mattress manufacturers create a statewide recycling program for any mattress and box spring that is discarded in the state. In California, the statewide recycling program is funded through a recycling fee that’s collected through each mattress and box spring sold. The States of Connecticut and Rhode Island also have mattress recycling laws in place.
“Hilton takes global sustainability seriously, and our partnership with GSS, a women-owned business, supports our sustainability goals and objectives and our commitment to supplier diversity. In addition to diverting mattresses and box springs from landfill, we work with GSS and LG Electronics to recycle televisions,” says Judy Pines, director of sustainability and responsible sourcing supply management for Hilton Hotels & Resorts. “Since launching the Mattress Recycling Initiative, we have seen a 50 percent cost savings on average, and we expect to see that number grow in the future as we expand the initiative to other regions.”
While the initiative is open to all U.S.- and Canada-based Hilton hotels, Hilton Anaheim, Calif., recently set the bar high by removing, deconstructing and recycling approximately 2,589 used Serta Perfect Sleeper Mattresses (306,894 pounds of solid waste) between January 4 and February 25.
“Hilton Anaheim is the largest mattress recycling product we have done to date. In the past two months or so, we have also diverted a total of approximately 4,000 mattress and box spring pieces from a number of hotels in the States of North Carolina, New York, Virginia, Pennsylvania and Tennessee,” says Pines. “Approximately 95 percent of the mattress and box spring components that were removed from the hotels will be recycled and repurposed into new products, such as tools, tempered flooring, oil filters and carpet padding.”