Packaging Waste Recovery Notes (PRNs)

A PRN is a Packaging Recovery Note or a Packaging Waste Recovery Note, to use its full title. These are evidence notes raised by Accredited Reprocessors to represent the tonnage of packaging waste they have processed to a required standard. Their equivalent - Packaging Export Recovery Notes (PERNs) – can be raised by Accredited Exporters who send packaging waste abroad for reprocessing to the same standards as we would expect in the UK.

PRN System

PRNs feed into a funding mechanism supporting the UK’s waste and recycling infrastructure. They were introduced in 1997 by the Producer Responsibility Obligations (Packaging Waste) Regulations. This legislation places a PRN purchasing obligation on companies handling over 50 tonnes of packaging with turnovers over £2m. Such companies are referred to as “Producers”. Because the material these Producers are responsible for ultimately ends up in the UK’s waste stream, they must buy sufficient PRNs in order to offset this obligation using a “producer pays” principle. In simple terms the more they handle the more PRNs they must buy against set percentage targets.

PRNs are important as the funding received from their sale by Accredited Reprocessors and Exporters can only be used in ways that benefit the waste system. This could include buying new recycling equipment or help financing recycling waste collections.

PRN Prices

The PRN market is based on supply and demand, with prices fluctuating depending on whether the market is short or in surplus when compared to against annual targets. There are many factors that feed into this such as the targets themselves, recycling performance against those targets and world socio-economic events.

Compliance Schemes

With there being thousands of obligated Producers, the purchase of PRNs most often occurs via Packaging Compliance Schemes such as Valpak who represent large numbers of companies to which the legislation applies.

At Valpak we buy PRNs of the relevant type and quantity in order to offset our members’ obligations in the below materials. The types of PRNs we buy are:

  • Aluminium
  • Glass
  • Paper
  • Plastic
  • Recovery (energy from waste)
  • Steel
  • Wood

PRNs to Sell

Valpak is the UK’s largest Packaging Compliance Scheme and purchaser of PRNs / PERNs. We welcome opportunities from both established and newly accredited suppliers, both big and small. Alongside prompt and reliable payment will do as much as possible to both work with you and meet your selling requirements.

If you have PRNs or PERNs to sell please contact our Procurement Team using the below details

03450 682 572