Plastics Recycling MarketsReclaimers are paying more for bales of post-consumer PET and HDPE this month, but the price of PP scrap has plummeted since September. 

The price of PET beverage bottles and jars came up this month by about 13% percent. PET scrap is now averaging 8.50 cents per pound, compared with 7.53 cents per pound this time last month. Some regions are still trading as high as 12.00 cents per pound, with most offering as low as 7.00 cents. PET was trading at 22.78 cents one year ago.

The national average price of natural high-density polyethylene (HDPE) is also up, now at an average 44.56 cents per pound. This compares with 39.50 cents last month. The price was 104.25 cents this time last year.

Color HDPE is up marginally, now trading at 6.41 cents per pound, compared to 6.16 cents this time last month. It averaged 54.00 cents one year ago.

Polypropylene (PP) prices have dropped quite a bit over the past month, however. PP is trading at 5.38 cents per pound, down from 8.31 cents last month, or a drop of 35%. PP was 32.69 cents one year ago.

The national average price of Grade A film is also down, now at 19.50 cents per pound, compared to 20.75 last month and 20.63 cents one year ago. 

Grade B film is 6.94 cents, compared to 7.00 last month. 

Grade C film remains firm at 0.94 cents per pound.

Generally speaking, plastic price changes this month haven’t been as dramatic as they have been for bales of paper and cardboard boxes coming from materials recovery facilities (MRFs). Values for those recyclables dropped precipitously in October.

These prices are as reported on the Secondary Materials Pricing (SMP) Index. This pricing represents what is being paid for post-consumer recyclable materials in a sorted, baled format, picked up at most major recycling centers. 

For a free trial to SMP’s Online Post-Consumer Pricing Index, visit the Recycling Markets website. You can also contact Christina Boulanger-Bosley at [email protected] or 330-956-8911.