SGT'S Recycling is partnering with Lakestate Industries, makers of the Yooper Fire Starters, to bundle wood from old mattress box springs and create packages of fire kindling.
SGT'S Recycling employs veterans, many of whom are disabled. Lakestate Industries employs the learning disabled.
"We're very similar. And the fact that they are somebody who's trying to help people in the area; we're doing the same thing," said Steve Hawn, CEO of SGT'S Recycling.
After taking a tour of Lakestate's factory workshop, Hawn said he got the idea to merge part of what the two companies do.
"We created a combination bundle where there's about seven or eight pounds of really dry kindling that comes from the mattress, and then we package it with their Yooper Fire Starter."
The Yooper Fire Starters last about a half hour. But by adding SGT'S wood from box springs, the kindling can start a fire that can last for hours.
Cheryl Ohman, Executive Director of Lakestate Industries, said, "Lakestate is excited to team up with a new area business. Lakestate is always looking to expand our services and increase awareness throughout the Upper Peninsula."
SGT'S Recycling will handle all of the marketing and sales. CEO Steve Hawn says the next step is to take the idea to market with the hope of finding interest on a local, as well as a national level. He plans to start selling the kindling bundles at gas stations and campsites.