A Santa Cruz, Calif., company hopes its first product — an American-made desk lamp manufactured from recycled ABS electronic waste — will catch the eye of hotels looking to improve their sustainability footprint; consumers looking for a competitively priced, stylish, green product; and federal and state governments looking to green their buildings.
“We're going to be making an initial run of about 1,000 units” said Nancy Wahl-Scheurich, CEO of LittleFootprint Lighting, which has spent the past two years developing its HeronLED Personal Task Light desk lamp.
Wahl-Scheurich expects to start shipping the product by the beginning of next year. It is being made for LittleFootprint by Kennerly-Spratling Inc., which has 27 injection molding machines ranging in size from 80-1,760 tons.
Kennerly-Spratling's 72,000-square-foot plant is located in San Leandro, Calif. The company has experience in manufacturing products from recycled resins, as it makes toys made from recycled high density polyethylene milk jugs for Green Toys Inc. of Mill Valley, Calif.
“[Kennerly-Spratling has] been patiently working with me for a year,” said Wahl-Scheurich, pointing out that an initial plan to use recycled polypropylene was scrapped because the material was not rigid enough.
“We have a number of retailers interested and have received some interest from consumers,” said Wahl-Scheurich, who displayed the lamp at the Ecobuild America show, held Dec 7-8 in Washington.
“We had thought that we would ship it a year ago, but the molds are being tweaked and we are doing Underwriters Laboratories testing.”
The recycled ABS supplier is engineered plastics recycler MBA Polymers Inc. in Richmond, Calif., whose facility is about 20 miles north of Kennerly-Spratling's.
In addition, the HeronLED desk lamp uses 70 percent recycled steel — sourced in the U.S. — in its base. Unlike many desk lamps that have built-in LED bulbs, the HeronLED's bulb can be replaced and is made in Vermont, not overseas.
What's more, the bulb uses seven to 10 times less energy than a conventional desk lamp, according to Wahl-Scheurich, and produces as much light as a 30-watt incandescent light bulb.
“Most high-quality desk lamps [cost] $150-$300, so we priced our lamp at $195.99 because we wanted to be priced at the lower-end,” she said.
“The hospitality markets are all looking to push their sustainability record. Our desk lamp has a cool design and is less expensive than the ones they use now,” she said.