Market Snapshot: May 2015

11th January 2017

WRAP's Market Snapshot provides an overview of recent developments in recovered material markets and is updated on a regular basis.

Key points:
Developments in UK recovered material markets have been mixed so far this year with market specific factors taking centre stage regarding price fluctuations
Clear and amber cullet prices are broadly unchanged, green and mixed cullet prices have declined by £10-£15 per tonne
Wood waste gate fees are stable at £50-£55 per tonne, but high from a historical perspective


The key development so far in 2015 has been the announcement in late February that the Aylesford newsprint mill was to shut down. The closure of the 400kt mill based in Kent and the announced intention by UPM to close its 215kt PM1 machine at its Shotton mill will leave just 675kt per annum of newsprint capacity in the UK.

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Recovered natural HDPE and clear PET bottle prices in April are unchanged compared with January at around £385 per tonne and £145 per tonne respectively. Prices declined earlier in the year, before eventually recovering ground.

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Clear and amber cullet prices are broadly unchanged since the start of 2015 at around £20 per tonne and £15 per tonne respectively. Green and mixed cullet prices have declined by £10-£15 per tonne with green cullet prices now close to £5 per tonne (£0 per tonne at the bottom end of the range), while some merchants are reporting having to pay gate fees for mixed cullet.

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Recovered textile prices have been broadly stable since the start of 2015. Prices remain around 10%-15% lower than year earlier levels due to weaker demand from key export markets (in particular West Africa and Ukraine/Russia)

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Aluminium and steel

Since the start of 2015 recovered aluminium can prices have declined by £80 per tonne (almost 10%) to £800 per tonne while steel can prices are down one-third to £85 per tonne. The fall in steel can prices mirrors the recent fall in ferrous scrap metal prices, which in turn have responded to lower iron ore prices. Finally, mixed can prices are down about £5 per tonne to £115 per tonne.

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Recovered wood gate fees remained high during early 2015 at £50-£55 per tonne, up from around £40 per tonne a year ago.

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Where next?

Want to know more about recovered materials markets? Take a look at our reports, guides, tools and case studies for further information:

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