Mattress Recycling Takes Center Stage at Prestigious International Event

International Sleep Products Association President Ryan Trainer today congratulated the students from Belmont University in Nashville, TN, who were victorious as they represented the United States this week at the Enactus World Cup, an international competition featuring students who acquire entrepreneurial and leadership skills by creating socially responsible businesses in their communities. Competing against 38 other Enactus teams from around the world, the Belmont crew won the World Cup Tuesday afternoon.

“These students have demonstrated, through their hard work and ingenuity, that it is possible to make a difference in our communities while maintaining sustainable businesses models,” said Trainer. “Their win at the World Cup level will raise awareness of both used mattress recycling and the need for a national mattress recycling program.”

Belmont University’s entry in the competition featured the innovative student-developed Spring Back Recycling enterprise, which is a used mattress recycling program intended to both help the environment and create jobs. Through the program, previously incarcerated workers are taught the skills they need to gain employment at Spring Back’s recycling facility, where mattresses are dismantled and their component materials are recycled for use in new products.

“We’re certainly proud of the students from Belmont University for representing the United States so well and for developing and launching their successful recycling venture,” Trainer said. “ISPA will continue to support their efforts as they license their approach in other U.S. cities. Proven business models like Spring Back will be invaluable as we advocate for a national mattress recycling program. Operations like this would benefit from important economies of scale possible under a national approach, as opposed to the inefficiencies and added costs that piecemeal, state-based legislation would create.”

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About ISPA: Established in 1915, the International Sleep Products Association is dedicated to protecting and enhancing the growth, profitability and stature of the mattress industry. As the industry’s trade organization, ISPA represents nearly 700 mattress manufacturers and suppliers throughout the world, providing a wide range of services that benefit its membership.

About Spring Back: Nashville, Tennessee-based Spring Back Recycling began in March 2010 at Belmont University. After winning seed money from the Values and Ventures competition at Texas Christian University, the Belmont University SIFE team endeavored to make the idea into a reality. Spring Back Recycling partnered with Belmont Church’s Isaiah 58 Ministries, employing formerly incarcerated men.