C&A's Carpet Recycling Program Surpasses 100,000,000 Pound Milestone

DALTON, Ga. (February 2006) – C&A Floorcoverings (C&A), a Tandus company, announced it has recycled more than 100 million pounds of reclaimed vinyl and vinyl-backed carpet, since it introduced the Infinity Initiative 10 years ago.

“For more than 35 years, C&A has been at the forefront of every significant technological advance in the development of environmentally designed carpet,” said Mac Bridger, CEO of Tandus. “We know that recycling carpet is but one part of the sustainability ideal, but it underscores our commitment to developing holistic environmental solutions that make our other environmental achievements possible.”

Housed at Tandus’ Center for Environmental Innovation, C&A’s recycling program recycles any post-consumer vinyl-backed carpet, regardless of original manufacturer, into 100 percent recycled content backing for new ER3® floorcoverings.

Containing a minimum of 25 percent post-consumer carpet, the remaining 75 percent of the ER3 backing system consists of postindustrial waste generated during carpet manufacturing and industrial waste from the automotive industry.

Because old vinyl-backed carpet and vinyl waste is the only feedstock for its ER3 backings, C&A instituted FLOORE, a “buy-back” program offering customers financial incentives to return and recycle their old vinyl-backed carpet. The company’s sustainable warranty guarantees to customers that all carpet returned will be recycled in its entirety and that no portion will be landfilled, incinerated (including waste-to-energy) or disposed of in any other way.

How to Recycle Carpet with Tandus

Commercial customers who want to recycle the carpet they are removing should ensure that recycling is included in project specifications. They then need to verify with Tandus that their carpet can be recycled. Tandus will accept any vinyl-backed carpet, regardless of manufacturer. In coordination with their Tandus account executive, customers collect the carpet and ship it back to C&A’s Dalton, Ga., recycling facility. Working with recycling industry partners, Tandus can also help customers recycle old broadloom carpet. The process for recycling old carpet can also contribute to achieving LEED Construction Waste credits.

As a result of its recycling processes, C&A has made significant strides with programs such as reduction of virgin material use, energy, water consumption, emissions, greenhouse gases and VOCs.

“Battling unnecessary waste is part of the culture at C&A. Not only do we look at our manufacturing processes but we have programs in place to analyze the remaining waste we generate,” Bridger said. “C&A’s management is dedicated to annually reducing landfill totals as measured by pounds of trash generated versus total square yards of carpet produced. We’ve been very successful – C&A has had virtually no manufacturing waste since 1994.”