Recycling prices and market commentary: 24 January 2020


It was definitely a week for taking stock for UK recyclers, taking the opportunity for assessing where they are and where they think they will be this year.

In previous years, Chinese New Year was a big deal with it affecting shipping in particular. This year, it is largely irrelevant to the market, which shows how much things have changed.


Price changes were not really seen for physical materials, although the PRN/PERN price increased for plastics. OCC was up a touch, but not much.

In metals, copper grades dropped quite a bit, but everything else was pretty much stable.

The pound was unchanged against the dollar at $1.30, while selling into Europe became a touch more expensive with the pound at €1.18 from €1.17 a week ago.

Recycled plastics

Although the plastic PRN/PERN price increased by £10 per tonne, the same increase wasn’t seen across the physical packaging grades.

Bottle grades are losing demand from buyers with UK and European outlets talking of high stocks or even being full up. After the big falls last week, reflecting the big fall in PRN/PERN price, these grades stayed at the same price this week even with the certificate price increase.

LDPE demand from UK buyers is weakening, as they have high stocks of material. Demand from Europe appears to be strengthening and may improve in coming weeks. This could be timely, as legitimate Asian buyers are wary due to every increasing restrictions on imports.

Forecast prices

LDPE 98/2409-415404-410

Recycled paper

Prices moved up a touch at the bottom of the market for OCC, helping to raise the overall market price by a pound.

Indonesia continued its pattern of paying the best price with £40 to £45 possible for high quality material that matched its specification. Many in the market aren’t sure whether this will last, but they said that last week and the week before.

Chinese specification material is still in the £32 to £40 region, with some quota being filled at the moment.

Indian is buying the bulk of the material from mid-£20s to low-£30s the range depending on the quality and needs of the buyer.

UK recyclers were also around this price, if they were buying. Demand from UK mills is really low as they struggle to shift all the finished product they have.

Mixed and news & pam keep struggling.

Forecast prices

Mixed-3 – -7-3 – -7

Recycled metals

Copper dropped by £200 per tonne on the back of a falling LME price. Otherwise, metal prices were unchanged, with the exception of 18/8 stainless steel, which gained £25 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

Leave a Reply

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