Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of MRW, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more

Little cheer for PRN buyers in new packaging data

Packaging recovery note (PRN) buyers will be disappointed by the lack of positive news in the Environment Agency’s (EA) third quarter packaging data.

The view comes from Tom Rickerby, head of business development at PRN trading firm The Environment Exchange.

He said: “From the buyer’s view, there are not too many positives from the data. Anyone looking for some relief will be sorely disappointed.

“All in all, it is not a strong result and we are likely to see high values for PRNs. The key factors are tight supply, disruption of exports and political uncertainly, with Brexit likely to disturb that even more as it is a confidence issue.”

He said glass remelt prices had increased 15% to £20.50 while paper was up 3% to £17.50.

Plastic dropped by 15% against Q2 due to “problems in the market where the media narrative has changed from pollution to one where it concerns market abuses.

“There will be pressure on the EA to show it is in control.”

Rickerby also noted that the wood market was tight with no growth going into the usually quiet Q4, and was trading forward for 2019 at £65 per tonne.

Clarity Environmental’s business development executive Ed Ewence said Q3 data was crucial in calculating how the UK performed against its recycling targets, providing a good indication of how this might reflect in PRN prices in the final quarter.

He said: “Paper had its strongest quarter of the year and now sits at 99% of its target when carry-over is taken into account, indicating that it will significantly contribute to the 2018 general recycling target.

“Surplus steel also looks critical for this year. Already reaching its production target for 2018, and with a number of large reprocessers/exporters yet to report their Q3 production, we expect this to rise further still.”

He noted that 241,117 tonnes of plastic had been reported in Q3, which put it at 80% of target when carry-over was included.

Ewence was also concerned about the impact of problems of alleged abuses in the plastics market: “Plastic is at its highest price-point of the year and, with production relatively strong, many packaging producers are holding off from buying in the expectation that the cost will come down.

“However, with recent news that the EA is investigating possible plastic fraud, this could well be the most volatile grade going into the next quarter.”

Wood PRNs had reached highest price of the year, and the usual high demand for wood for heat generation in the winter made it “touch and go as to whether wood will meet its target”.

2017 Third Quarter Data

Recovery and recycling carried out 
  Waste accepted for UK reprocessing Waste exported for overseas reprocessing Total waste accepted or exported Total PRNs/PERNs issued
Paper/board 336,139 599,935 936,074 786,576
Paper composting 0 0 0 0
Glass remelt 241,269 85,091 326,360 312,054
Glass other 108,951 403 109,354 109,542
Aluminium 11,323 11,873 23,196 17,591
Steel 61,964 32,737 94,701 79,475
Plastic 94,013 180,576 274,588 266,050
Wood composting 0 0 0 0
Wood 109,153 1,322 110,475 102,386
TOTAL RECYCLING 962,812 911,937 1,874,748 1,673,674
         
Energy from waste 132,058 29,782 161,839 147,290
TOTAL RECOVERY 132,058 29,782 161,839 147,290
TOTAL RECOVERY (INC RECYCLING) 1,094,870 941,719 2,036,587 1,820,964

2018 Third Quarter Data

Recovery and recycling carried out
  Waste accepted for UK reprocessing Waste exported for overseas reprocessing Total waste accepted or exported Total PRNs/PERNs issued
Paper/board 317,359 609,422 926,781 859,482
Paper composting 0 0 0 0
Glass remelt 230,792 95,315 326,108 297,553
Glass other 80,119 223 80,342 59,969
Aluminium 10,822 17,192 28,014 22,654
Steel 71,818 32,155 103,972 90,283
Plastic 99,157 142,015 241,173 240,840
Wood composting 0 0 0 0
Wood 110,433 2,126 112,559 139,858
TOTAL RECYCLING 920,500 898,448 1,818,948 1,710,639
         
Energy from waste 126,948 41,418 168,366 181,085
TOTAL RECOVERY 126,948 41,418 168,366 181,085
TOTAL RECOVERY (INC RECYCLING) 1,047,448 939,866 1,987,314 1,891,724

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions. Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.