Recycling prices and market commentary: 14 October 2022

LDPE film

Normally at this time of year, everybody is busy as the recycling market gears up to the Christmas period.

But this doesn’t seem to be happening, with the difficult state of the economy casting a strong shadow over market trading.


Almost everyone is reporting that arisings are low, but so is demand for materials. This is across the recycling market, and doesn’t seem restricted to any particular grades.

Paper grades some falls this week, but the same pattern wasn’t reflected by plastics even though the PRN/PERN increase aided both materials.

Indeed, there is a wait-and-see approach with some hoping the value of the PRN/PERN will rise across materials through the remainder of October and November, but we will have to wait and see.

Volatility continues in the FX market, with the pound at $1.12 at the time of writing compared to $1.14 a week ago. Compared to the euro, the pound was trading at €1.15 from €1.13 last week.

Recycled plastics

Although the PRN/PERN value was up about £10 per tonne on the back of the monthly data from the NPWD, this wasn’t enough to drive prices higher. Indeed, all grades pretty much stayed the same.

There wasn’t a lot of trading going on. Some were hoping for the increased PRN/PERN price to drive more demand, but it didn’t seem forthcoming.

Availability of material is generally low, but there isn’t enough demand to push prices higher.

However, interestingly, US bottle grade prices have increased a little over the last month, suggesting there might be some improving global demand for these grades. The same isn’t true for film, which dropped in value.

Forecast prices

LDPE 98/2594-600592-598

Recycled paper

Although it is the middle of October, many are already trying to trade early for November, in the hope of fixing better prices now.

Some were getting luck with Asia tending to pay better prices, especially with the benefit of the PRN/PERN (especially for OCC) and lower freight costs. However, those pushing for even higher costs are getting resistance as Asian buyers are also happy sourcing from Europe or US where prices are dropping. Indeed, US prices have come down considerably over the past month. UK prices for OCC were down typically by about £10 per tonne on last week.

Mixed didn’t change this week and some orders were going through. But talk for November is of gate fee to £10 per tonne. Although it is worth remembering some were talking about that for October and it hasn’t come to pass yet.

Downward pressure has also been seen on news & pams, but it continues to attract a good premium compared to other grades.

What is clear though is that this isn’t the typical busy October you would have normally expected to see in the run-up to Christmas in previous years.

Forecast prices


Recycled metals

After last week’s stability, prices moved around a bit more this week. Copper was down by £75 per tonne, brass was up by £50 per tonne and aluminium increased by £100 per tonne. Lead also saw a rise by £50 per tonne.

However, ferrous grades dropped by £10 per tonne.

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