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ZWNZ and Vita NZ announce a Foam Recycling Scheme

20 April 2006
Media Release – For immediate use

Zero Waste New Zealand Limited and Vita New Zealand Ltd announce a Foam Recycling Scheme

Trials are underway to recycle and reuse another product rather than send it to landfill.

Councils, Community Groups and Waste Companies now have a potential avenue to recycle foam, a major component of furniture in New Zealand. Foam was previously a waste product, costing up to $120 per tonne in landfill fees, but is now on track to be sold, collected and reprocessed in NZ.

If the trial is successful, the foam will attract a small payment per kilogramme and will be collected for reuse from designated sites throughout the country.

“We are excited to have found a way to complete the loop and bring end of life foam back to our factories, for reuse in the New Zealand market,” said Michael Sexton, Director, Vita New Zealand Ltd.

Vita has already reached the Enviromark Gold Status.

A further bonus, is that this foam will be processed for reuse within New Zealand, not shipped overseas as many recyclables are. In fact if New Zealand can collect enough foam, this will save on the current importation of raw materials.

Zero Waste New Zealand is planning for a number of depots around the country where foam can be collected and stored for ultimate delivery to Vita. Furniture can consist totally of foam with a fabric cover, or have a timber frame which is untreated and so suitable for firewood, and springs which can go in the metal collection which is also a revenue item. Clean squabs, car seats, carpet underlay and cushions are other sources of foam.

Some of the best city and district Councils in New Zealand are diverting 74-90% of their waste from landfill by separating and finding secondary markets for the products. This new initiative gives them a chance to further reduce waste to landfill.

Currently 71% of New Zealand Councils are committed to head for Zero Waste, this new opportunity is just another incremental step towards our goal.

Please view the ZW website at www.zerowaste.co.nz for further details.

ENDS

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