Q4 packaging data shows strong 2019 out turn

12 MARCH 2020

The EA has very kindly published provisional Q4 recycling data a couple of weeks earlier than normal in response to industry requests to help estimate likely PRN supply for the year.

Overall, they show a strong performance for 2019 with aluminium in particular achieving the highest quarterly figure ever boosted by an exceptional level of exports. And despite all the worries at the beginning of the year, plastic recycling hit record levels with a strong surge in UK reprocessing and a recovery of export tonnages.

The question, of course, is whether these can be maintained through 2020? The monthly data published last week indicated that so far, the high levels of quarter 4 recycling have continued into Q1. But with increasing concerns over the potential impact of the Coronavirus on exports and demand, ever-tightening quality controls both by the UK port inspection teams and overseas recipients, it promises to be another uncertain year. 

The tables below show:

  • The December carry forward figures.
  • The quarterly breakdown of export and UK reprocessing
  • The final position for 2019 relating recycling to the net obligation demand
  • The recycling totals for each material going back to 2016