On May 27, 2020, industry association Plastics Recyclers Europe (PRE) announced the revision and addition of guiding requirements for the characterization of waste materials provided to recyclers. The requirements are intended to “be used both by the sorting centers and the recycling facilities to verify the reliability of suppliers and, along with the contractually agreed specifications, to characterize the content of the bales [of waste to be recycled]” in order to help increase the quality of plastics recycling.

The requirements aim to cover the largest plastics recycling streams in Europe and are now available for various colors of polyethylene terephthalate (PET) articles as well as for polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP) films, high density polyethylene (HDPE) containers, and rigid PP, among others. The documents “specify the main properties that define the type, origins and characteristics of the sorted waste, levels of impurities, means of transportation and supplier information.” They intend to serve as an information benchmark to inform but not replace contractually agreed specifications set by recyclers.

PRE recommends all sorted material for recycling are also checked for recyclability according to the RecyClass design for recycling guidelines (FPF reported).

Read more

PRE (May 27, 2020). “Quality sorting of waste for a successful circular plastics economy.”

Karen Laird (May 29, 2020). “Towards quality sorting of waste for a successful circular plastics economy.”


PRE (May 27, 2020). “Waste Characterization.”