Germany’s textile recyclers agreed:"2020 was a lost year"

The arrival of the "second wave" has increased
the pressure on recyclers again.
07.12.2020 − 

The pressures that the German waste textiles market has been operating under for quite some time have been compounded by the worsening Covid-19 pandemic. That being said, the "second wave" was not hitting the market as dramatically as the first had, observers said. Nevertheless, given all that had transpired since the outbreak of the pandemic in the spring, 2020 had been a "lost year” for the industry as a whole. All companies surveyed by EUWID endorsed this preliminary assessment. Prospects were rather bleak, too, at least until the middle of next year, with the market still mired in considerable uncertainty.

Collectors and sorters alike still have more than enough original collected stock on their hands, even though collection volumes had subsided a little of late due to the time of year, and inventories were "not as dramatically high as they used to be". Quite a few market players are also pinning their hopes on a decrease in arisings from collection containers because of the weather and slow clothing retail sales. This would reduce supply pressure. The long-lamented problem of poor-quality collected stock had now reached even areas where collection quality was traditionally good, respondents reported.

The primary area of concern on the sales front is business with Eastern Europe, which quite a few market players described as "very sluggish”, but others even called "disastrous”. The Czech Republic, for instance, was completely shut down because of the pandemic, but sales to Romania, Bulgaria and Poland were also proving difficult. Another difficulty was the limited availability of heavy goods vehicle capacity for transportation to Eastern Europe, one sorter noted. Shipments of other goods originating in Eastern Europe have apparently fallen considerably, cutting into the capacity available for freight transports in the opposite direction.

The full report on the waste textiles market in Germany will appear in the next print and e-paper issues of EUWID Recycling & Waste Management (25/2020) out on 9 December. Online subscribers can access the report immediately here: Waste textiles Germany

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