Participation, Interest High at CARE 2009 Entrepreneurs’ Meeting
Contact: Jeremy Stroop, Carpet America Recovery Effort (706) 428-2127
Dalton, GA – November 11, 2009 – More than 60 representatives from 47 different organizations met October 28 in Atlanta for the sixth annual Entrepreneurs’ Meeting of the Carpet America Recovery Effort (CARE). The meeting offers a chance for entrepreneur carpet collectors and others with vested interests in the carpet recycling industry to discuss the needs of and issues affecting post-consumer carpet collectors and processors.
Key issues this year included: discussion of current challenging economic conditions facing the carpet recycling industry; renegotiation of CARE’s Memorandum of Understanding of Carpet Stewardship due in 2012; emerging product opportunities for post-consumer carpet feedstock, and state and federal grant programs for CARE entrepreneur collectors. Also in discussion was how the limited availability of products that use material from post-consumer carpet continues to hinder growth. One of CARE’s goals in 2009 was the discovery of additional market opportunities for the plastic derived from the recycling of carpet.
During the New Product Opportunity Session, representatives from GeoHay, Ravago Americas and Polar Materials described how their organizations currently use recovered carpet materials and the potential for use to expand in the future.
According to meeting moderator Sean Ragiel, president of New Jersey-based collection and processing center Carpetcycle, this year’s meeting attracted more than two dozen new attendees. Although multiple forecasts presented at the meeting indicated the business climate looks positive for increased carpet recycling, Ragiel said that in the current economy, “patience and persistence must rule the day.”
As part of their efforts to assist the carpet collecting community, CARE has developed a universal reclamation certificate for quantifying amounts of carpet diverted for a particular project. Once carpet diversion totals are tallied, the certificate will be presented to the project manager or building owner as proof of their reclamation efforts.
CARE was formed as a result of the Memorandum of Understanding for Carpet Stewardship (MOU), a national agreement signed by members of the carpet industry, representatives of government agencies at the federal, state and local levels, and non-government organizations. CARE works diligently to develop market-based solutions for recovering value from discarded carpet in order to facilitate the achievement of the organization’s ultimate goal of a 40% diversion rate of post-consumer carpet from the nation’s landfills.