Innovative designers are developing applications for recycled content that range from industrial molding and compounding to residential seating. | Courtesy of Herman Miller

Two companies are marketing chairs made from recycled content, and another two debuted lines of post-consumer polymers.

Herman Miller released the redesigned Sayl chair, which now contains ocean-bound plastic, in Asia, Latin America and North America. It became available in Europe in 2022. 

Each chair includes up to 0.9 pounds of plastic found near waterways, according to a press release, and contributes to the company’s goal of using 50% recycled content across its entire portfolio by 2030.

Gabe Wing, director of sustainability at parent company MillerKnoll, said in the press release that “true innovation isn’t always about making new products.”

“Oftentimes it can be looking for ways to use new research, perspectives and resources to improve what already exists,” Wing said. 

Design brand Mater has also released a seat made from recycled content. The Eternity High Stool is made from a composite material of coffee shell fibers, beer kegs, bike parts and sawdust with plastic scrap that the company calls “Matek.” It sources the material from “large-scale corporations who may not know what to do with their discarded products.”

Mater makes several different kinds of furniture with the material and also runs a takeback program. 

Recycled polymers 

Materials producer Ascend added a new line to its Circular Polymers brand, which it acquired last fall with the purchase of California-based carpet recycling company Circular Polymers. Cerene is a line of recycled polymers and materials that is available in polyamide 6 and 66, PET, PP and calcium carbonate. It can be used in molding and compounding, according to a press release. 

Maria Field, business director of Circular Polymers by Ascend, said customers “around the globe are seeking consistent and reliable post-consumer recycled materials.” 

“Cerene is mechanically recycled using a process that minimizes our carbon footprint and environmental impact,” Field added. 

Chemical company AdvanSix unveiled a 100% recycled content nylon from post-consumer and post-industrial material. According to a press release, it is certified by an independent third-party organization using a mass balance and allocation approach. The nylon meets food contact materials regulations.

Kori Anderson, vice president and general manager of nylon solutions at AdvanSix, said the product comes in response to “growing demand among plastic and film manufacturers for a reliable, cost-effective supply of 100% recycled materials.” 

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