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Q2 unverified packaging recycling data released

22nd July 2017

Melanie Harper

The Q2 recycling data has had its initial release on the 22 July 2017.  It is worth being aware that this data is currently unverified and therefore subject to change, with the verified data not released until the 15 August 2017. However, this data does provide a good initial insight into current UK recycling performance and trends.

Overall, the data is fairly positive and should help reduce any further volatility in the recycling market. There are still question marks regarding some materials, especially due to issues surrounding exports and Operation National Sword in China, which could still have an impact on the Q3 and Q4 recycling performance.

As can be seen in the table above, most materials have seen an increase in recycling performance for Q2, with only Paper, Plastic and Energy from Waste (EfW) seeing decreases. The decreases in Paper and EfW shouldn’t impact the market too greatly, as they are still performing above the current targets for this point in the year. Further decreases in paper recycling in Q3 and Q4 could potentially start to impact the general recycling target, which relies heavily on Paper PRNs in order to be met. The decrease in plastic was expected due to decreased exports to China from Operation National Sword, but currently plastic is still performing in line with the UK target for 2017. This should hopefully prevent too much future volatility in the market, but the Q3 and Q4 data will be particularly important in ensuring the target is met for 2017.

As seen in the above graphs, most materials are performing well and there shouldn’t be any unexpected issues with Paper, Aluminium, Steel, Wood and EfW going forward. Glass Other is still trailing behind the required level of performance for this stage in the year and is therefore a material to keep an eye on moving forward. However, once the carry in is taken into account and with the supply Glass Re-melt which can also be used to make up any shortfall, this shouldn’t cause too much of a problem. The carry in tonnage for Plastic going into 2017 has helped ensure that it is currently above the required level of performance, but as Operation National Sword continues to reduce exports of waste Plastic, further decreases in recycling performance will start to reduce this buffer.

In summary, these figures are largely positive, but there are still some materials which have the potential to cause further problems before the end of the year. Comply Direct will continue to monitor this data for any changes in the build up to the verified data release. If you have any questions about the data, please don’t hesitate to contact the packaging team at packaging@complydirect.com.