Recycling prices and market commentary: 22 November 2019

Cardboard OCC
Cardboard OCC in a bale

Cardboard and mixed paper remain in a very, very difficult place at the moment.

Although the price of OCC was largely stable this week, mixed dropped. The problem is that not too many people feel any optimism for the next six months or beyond.


Plastic packaging grades also saw a fall on the back of the PRN/PERN price dropping and a little less demand.

In metals, only ferrous prices increased, meaning a small increase for steel cans.

Foreign exchange rates were unchanged at $1.28 and €1.16.

Recycled plastics

With the PRN/PERN price dropping, this led to packaging grade prices falling too.

The PRN/PERN price was lower by £11 this week compared to the week before, but a little less demand saw physical prices drop a touch more.

PET and HDPE bottles both lost £15 per tonne as demand eased off a touch from UK and Europe in particular.

European demand for film also fell back a little, causing a drop of £20 per tonne for 99/1 and 98/2.

Forecast prices

LDPE 98/2485-491485-491

Recycled paper

There is a lot of doom and gloom out there in the recovered paper sector with cardboard and mixed paper suffering. With OCC staying low, and mixed dropping a bit further, there is also a lot of tension with people increasingly falling out over trades and claims.

OCC prices were in the region of £15 to £25, with much trading below £20 if it was trading at all.

There was still some demand for mixed paper into Asia, but only for the very best quality stuff and at very low prices.

Some talk is now about charging for collection of OCC and mixed, with SRF and energy from waste options being considered. That will mean quite a large gate fee, and won’t go down well with customers used to receiving income for their paper.

With Indonesia also temporarily stopping imports from this week, the situation really does not look good for the paper sector at the moment. Most expect it will take six months before anything improves.

Other paper grades appear to be holding up at the moment.

Forecast prices


Recycled metals

Most grades saw no change in price this week, with the exception of ferrous metals that increased by £5 per tonne. This also included steel cans, which rose by the same amount.

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

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.