The Urethane Blog

Online Mattress Suppliers Will Be Required to Pick Up Used Mattresses in CA

Mattress Recycling Law Levels the Playing Field

Furniture World Magazine
Volume 151 No. 6 November/December

By HFA Reports on 11/20/2020 Please Load Image

Content about HFA member-retailers contributed by HFA.

Omar Mendoza accepts his obligations under California’s mattress recycling program. Anyone who purchases a mattress from his store, All American Mattress & Recliners in Beaumont, is entitled to ask him to remove a used mattress for recycling at no charge.

What gets under Mendoza’s skin is when someone who’s not a customer calls to ask for the same service. Often, he learns the person making the request bought a new mattress from an online dealer.

New Rules for Online Dealers

Pictured is Gary Trudell of HFA member Custom Comfort Mattress Company. With seven stores in Southern California, Custom Comfort collects many old mattresses. He is happy to finally see everyone share in the responsibility of recycling.

“It happens so often it’s ridiculous,” said Mendoza, a member of the Home Furnishings Association.

But a reckoning, of sorts, is coming. Beginning January 1, 2021, online mattress sellers will face the same requirements as brick-and-mortar stores. Not only must they collect and remit to the state the same recycling fee of $10.50 for each mattress and another $10.50 for each box spring, they also must offer to pick up a used mattress for every mattress delivered—for free.

“It’s about time,” said Mendoza.

Indeed. This has been required of stores like his for the past five years. The program, operated by the Mattress Recycling Council, has diverted millions of mattresses from landfills. But it puts a heavy responsibility on retailers, who must absorb the expense of carrying away used mattresses, storing them and then hauling them to collection sites. Online sellers, which often deliver beds-in-a-box and other sleep products by common carrier, have not had to do that. That gives them a price advantage, which the MRC recognizes.

“It really does need to be fair,” said Lori Barnes, the council’s manager of industry communications.

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