From The Daily Mail:
A worn-out carpet in a jewellery shop workshop is worth thousands of pounds – because it is covered in specks of gold dust and platinum cuttings. The family-run shop is replacing the 15-year-old carpet, which was fitted near seven workstations where craftsmen make jewellery using the precious metals.
Now Richard Blampied, who runs Aurum Jewellers in St Helier, Jersey, with his daughter Julie, is sending the carpet to a bullion merchants where it will be burned. The leftover gold, platinum and silver will then be weighed and its monetary value returned to the business.
Reminds me of when I was a lad at printing college, we did some gold blocking, which involved putting some 'gold' backed foil on the book and printing through it.
The teacher told us that where he had started as an apprentice, they sometimes printed with 'gold' ink that actually contained a fair amount of real gold. Some clumsy clogs had knock the tin of ink onto the floor, and the stuff was so expensive, it made sense to tear up all the floorboards and sent them to the bullion merchants to recover the gold.
I could never decide whether the story was true or not, or whether it was just an apocryphal tale invented by the teacher (or by people at the place he was an apprentice) to serve as a warning, but in the light of this, I'm shifting that one into the “probably true” category.