Recycling prices and market commentary: 17 December 2021

LDPE film

Please note: this will be the last pricing and market report for this year. The next one will be on 7 January 2022.

This week was largely about Christmas and getting everything in order before many people take a well deserved break after a very busy year.


For those trading into Europe, today was the effective deadline for sending material there, and so this week was about logistics for those.

Elsewhere, thoughts are starting to turn to Chinese New Year on 1 February, and whether that will bring further disruption in January and February to container availability. Of course, that would be on top of what has been a challenging year for getting hold of boxes.

Otherwise, the markets were relatively stable with only small changes occurring.

The pound was slightly stronger against the dollar at $1.33 from $1.32 last week. Against the euro it remained at €1.17.

Recycled plastics

The situation with R3 exports into The Netherlands eased a little this week, with some Dutch recycling companies confirming to their suppliers that they would be able to claim the PERN. Other companies were a bit more reluctant as they did not want to give end destination information, citing it as commercially sensitive.

However, the key thing was that material was still moving with those who were prepared to show they are R3 compliant.

There remains the concern, and in some cases huge worries, that the Environment Agency in England will cancel PERNs as a result of this R3 situation. This would mean these companies having to buy back what has been lost, and in some cases could put them out of business.

In terms of the PRN/PERN price, it was currently at around £68 in effectively the last full trading week of the year, which was up a little on last week. For December transition it was around £80.

While bottle prices were still strong, slightly weaker trading into Europe as a result of this R3 situation kept prices largely stable for film.

Forecast prices

LDPE 98/2435-441440-446

Recycled paper

It was a quiet week with most focused on January now. As a result of this, prices didn’t really change compared to last week.

Those trading in Europe needed to get material over there by today so were focused on ensuring that happened with hauliers.

Other export destinations are seeing falling prices in the US and are waiting to see if that catches on elsewhere, plus how far it will fall before making purchasing decisions. Of course, this is with the knowledge that they may need to shift material early in January to ensure it doesn’t get caught up in the inevitable Chinese New Year container disruption.

Forecast prices


Recycled metals

Copper dropped by £200 per tonne, and brass 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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