Less post-industrial waste available on German plastics recycling market

Raw materials and components shortages are affecting
various industries including the plastics sector
05.10.2021 − 

The German waste plastics market displayed no signs of fundamental change in September. Regrind and recycled pellet producers were able to keep their sales prices largely the same as in August. That being said, a few recyclers are complaining that the supply of post-industrial scrap is scant. Stoppages in parts of the automotive industry, where producers often had to introduce short-time work because of the shortage of chips, are partly to blame.

A lack of components and raw materials is also leaving its mark in other areas of the plastic converting business. Supply constraints for wood, steel, semi-conductors and primary plastics, coupled with the scarcity and high cost of transport services, were impacting all industries, market sources said. What is more, certain plastic fractions from Germany’s household packaging waste recovery system seem to be in short supply. For instance, the amount of rigid plastic made out of PP and HDPE was growing increasingly scarce as companies switched to much lighter film packaging to reduce the weight of their products.

Direct exports to Far East still negligible

The old, familiar problems were still playing a role on the export market: almost nothing was being exported to Asia anymore because German authorities have banned these shipments. At the same time, Dutch commodity merchants were continuing to buy film scrap in Germany to export it to Asia, German exporters said, complaining about distorted competition.

Turkish buyers ordered mixed post-commercial film scrap again in September, typically buying grades of lower than 98/2 quality. However, at times, the prices that Turkish customers wanted to pay had not been really all that attractive, merchants noted. India was not a sales market for German merchants, given the export restrictions.

The full report on the waste plastics market in Germany appears in the print and e-paper issues of EUWID Recycling & Waste Management (20/2021) published on 6 October. Our online subscribers can access the report immediately here:

Waste plastics in Germany

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