Recycling prices and market commentary: 10 September 2021

HDPE milk bottles

Is there a sense that appetite may have changed in the recycling market? Possibly, but equally it could just be a lull after the recent splurge.

This week saw a mostly flat market, but there was some sense that appetite may be waning for some grades of plastics.


There also appears to be a realisation in the paper market, that it is all very well offering high prices for fibre, but if the material isn’t there anyway, there is no point inflating the market for when it is.

Metal grades were generally steady this week too.

Haulage and shipping remains a nightmare, while fuel and energy costs keep on rising, adding to the costs of mills and recycling facilities.

In terms of foreign exchange, it was stable against the dollar at $1.38 and remained at €1.16.

Recycled plastics

It was generally a quiet week for the plastics market this week.

For film grades, European demand was steady and UK buyers were able to attract lower rates by having a bit of an advantage when it comes to haulage.

With the PRN/PERN price rising £5 per tonne this week, the underlying market effectively dropped by the same amount, with no price changes for film overall. Today saw the publication of the August data, which still suggests everything is well on course for compliance.

PET bottles are seeing weaker demand though, and some facilities are now saying they are full and don’t need any more. This brought the price down by around £10 per tonne this week.

There was no change for HDPE bottles or other plastics.

Forecast prices

LDPE 98/2331-337330-336

Recycled paper

It was a flat market this week with most trade having occurred at the end of August for this month.

Prices for all grades remained unchanged.

But there is a realisation from mill groups that there is only limited supply out there, and they know that there is no point in trying to offer higher prices if the material isn’t going to be there. As a result, when they are buying, they are very keen to pay what they have previously.

Plus, Indian buyers just aren’t interested at the moment, especially as Chinese demand for pulp is weaker from there. South East Asia continues to show interest in OCC, and mixed to a degree, while European demand for mixed is still strong.

Where there was a bullishness in the market in August that prices would surge throughout August, this has been replaced by an expectation of a flat market. Some are even suggesting a pound or two off in October.

Forecast prices


Recycled metals

Brass grades fell by £50 per tonne this week.

Recycling prices

For recycled paper prices, click here

For recycled plastic prices, click here

For recycled metal prices, click here

For recycled glass prices, click here

For PRN/PERN prices, click here

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