Brussels, February 5, 2020

Report1 highlights new trends in PET collection and sorting

A strong trend towards the use of recycled PET (rPET) due to increased demand is projected in the report by sustainability consultancy Eunomia, done in collaboration with NMWE (former EFBW), Petcore Europe and PRE.

Significant improvements have been made in recycling processes and with the increasing quality of materials, rPET could reach as much as 55% of total PET demand by 2030. This is particularly evident for food-grade rPET used in bottle-to-bottle processes, where incentives such as the producers’ voluntary pledges and rPET content targets set in the EU Single Use Plastics Directive (25% by 2025) are set to further accelerate the production.

The market for trays and sheets, which currently absorbs 20% of rPET, is also considered in the report. It is estimated that the average recycled content of PET trays produced in Europe is 50% and this trend is set to continue.

Main obstacles identified are collection and design for recycling. To achieve the 90% EU separate collection target for beverage bottles and meet the expanding demand, well-thought-out and harmonised collection schemes must be implemented with the help of local and national authorities. In parallel, a common approach to recyclability and product design must be established. Initiatives such as EPBP2 and RecyClass3 have laid out the ground, providing a common direction for the industry towards improving packaging recyclability.

Furthermore, increasing trust and traceability of the recycled materials by building on schemes such as EuCertPlast4 and aiming to establish an EU-wide certification for recycled materials would ensure the optimal uptake of rPET.

The industry must continue to work with policy makers and value chain partners to meet EU targets, in order to succesfully establish a circular economy for PET in Europe as we all have a role to play via design for recycling, efficient collection, sorting and state of the art recycling.


Natural Mineral Waters Europe
NMWE is the voice of the bottled water industry, dedicated to promoting the unique qualities of natural mineral and spring waters. NMWE represents almost 550 Natural Mineral and Spring Water producers in Europe, most of them small and sized companies. | Press contact:

Petcore Europe
Petcore Europe is the association representing the complete PET value chain in Europe since 1993.
Its mission is to ensure that the entire PET industry is well aligned to enhance its value and sustainable growth, to represent the PET industry before the European institutions and other stakeholders, to ensure that PET is positioned as an outstanding packaging material and recognised as environmentally sound, to support and validate innovative packaging solutions from a recycling perspective, and to work with all interested parties to ensure a continuous increase of PET postconsumer collection and recycling.
PET (PolyEthylene Terephthalate) is a strong but lightweight form of polyester. It is used to make containers for soft drinks, juices, drinks, water, edible oil, fresh food and dairy as well as household cleaners and other non-food applications. PET bottles and food containers, such as sheets and trays are perfectly recyclable while they help to reduce CO2 emissions and food waste.
Press contact:

Plastics Recyclers Europe (PRE) is an organization representing the voice of the European plastics recyclers who reprocess plastic waste into high-quality material destined for the production of new articles. Recyclers are important facilitators of the circularity of plastics and the transition towards the circular economy.
Plastics recycling in Europe is a rapidly growing sector representing €3bn in turnover, 6.6 mt of installed recycling capacity, 500 companies and 18.000 employees. Press contact:

1PET Market in Europe : State of Play. Production, collection and sorting data. Eunomia. 2020.
3About the Platform