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Quarter-three packaging recycling figures were released by the Environment Agency at the end of October, through the National Packaging Waste Database. 

The figures have highlighted an increase overall in the amount of recycling carried out over the last three months. An excess of glass remelt, plastic and steel recycling was seen, with a fall in the amount of glass aggregate being accepted.

Glass remelt saw 297,415 tonnes being accepted, which is an 11,669 tonne increase on quarter 2, and 47,000 tonnes over the quarterly obligation.

Despite this, glass aggregate experienced a shortfall in recycling, with 119,093 tonnes accepted, out of a 134,000 tonne quarterly obligation. While this may seem concerning, the excess in glass remelt recycling is able to be used to make up for this gap, alleviating any concerns in the sector.

Steel saw a slight decrease on quarter-two figures, with 99,034 tonnes accepted. However, this number is still higher than the 87,500 tonnes required quarterly to fulfil the steel obligation, which is good news.

It was also great news for plastic, with the amount recycled standing at 218, 595 tonnes; nearly 24,000 tonnes over the required quarterly obligation.

What does this mean for ecosurety and our members? Well, looking at the figures we can expect to see a fall in PRN prices across the board.

Compliance manager Mark Sayers said: “We are pleased that the volatile PRN materials, glass and plastic, have seen an increase in recycling this quarter. This appears to be as a result of increased PRN prices in previous quarters, which has led to more of the hard-to-recycle material being reprocessed, demonstrating the PRN system working effectively. On the back of these figures, we expect to see the PRN prices lower across the board as a result, which is great news for producers. This should reassure producers concerned about target increases for next year. It should also ensure the start of 2015 starts at a lower cost than the start of this year.”

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