Recycling prices and market commentary: 19 March 2021

Cardboard OCC
Cardboard OCC in a bale

March so far has seen huge growth in the value of certain materials, but as we head towards Easter, will this increase continue?

For paper grades, the situation is unclear with the price of OCC dropping, but mixed and news & pam still rising.


LDPE is still getting good demand from Europe, but other plastic grades aren’t responding in the same way.

Metals were stable this week.

Against the dollar, the pound remained at $1.39 this week, while the euro rate was also the unchanged at €1.16.

Recycled plastics

There is good demand for LDPE film coming from Europe at the moment, and this is helping to push up underlying prices for the best grades.

With a good PRN price, up just a touch from last week, some sellers into Europe are benefitting from the effective subsidy and able to benefit from offering competitive prices.

It is not the same with UK outlets though, who don’t expect this situation to last and are relying on contracted tonnage or trying to push lower spot prices, if they decide to be active in it.

Bottle grades have seen no increase, but improving demand has helped to push up the price of PP grades.

Forecast prices


Recycled paper

Recent weeks have seen the recovered fibre market get really hot, for some grades at least.

But as one market participant said, this week felt like the thermostat was reduced by a degree.

OCC came down to more around the £150 mark, although some participants were still willing to pay the higher prices to secure tonnage.

Others were able to transact below £150 though when previously they had been above it.

This easing did not seem to effect mixed though, which broke through the £100 per tonne barrier with Europe particularly keen to secure this grade, especially brown rich tonnage that appears much cheaper than OCC.

The impact of this was also to push news & pam above the £100 level, so it would be a step ahead of mixed.

Where will the market head in coming weeks? There are varying views but the outlook now appears more uncertain than it did a week ago when prices appeared to be on the rise.

Forecast prices


Recycled metals

There were no price changes for metals this week, in what has been an unusually stable market for the last few weeks.

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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