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Offset compliance cost with own waste PRNs: Are you taking advantage of high PRN rates and being paid a fair rate for your packaging waste?

Matt Luntley
Jan 27, 2020

 

Are you maximising the value of your business’s waste? Does your company receive the value of the Packaging Waste Recovery Note (PRN) back when plastic or cardboard is collected from site? If the answer is no or you’re not sure, this Blog might be of interest to you.

Packaging Waste Recovery Notes (PRNs)

If you have encountered the Packaging Waste Regulations, then no doubt you will be aware of what a PRN is and how the cost of procuring these has increased over the last 12 months.

For those that aren’t sure, a PRN is a recycling evidence note that is written when a tonne of packaging waste has been recycled.

Historically, the UK has exported a large amount of paper and plastic waste. This is due to a shortage of domestic processing capacity. As the overseas markets have tightened, particularly for plastic, it is now harder to get certain grades of plastic recycled. This has consequently led to less recycling and therefore means that the cost of this evidence (the PRN) has increased.

PRN Prices 

The above table from Letsrecycle.com shows their tracking of PRN prices in Q3 and Q4 of 2019.

Gain value from your business’s PRNs

What you may not be aware of is when your business sends cardboard or plastic in bulk for recycling it could be getting the PRN value back, as well as a rebate.

Many reprocessors will hold onto PRNs they generate from recycling the materials collected from your business’s premises, but it is possible to set up arrangements whereby the PRNs are passed back to your business and the cost deducted from your packaging compliance bill.

For example, if your company has an obligation under the Packaging Waste Regulations to purchase 100 paper and 100 plastic PRNs each year and your warehouse operations dispose of the same tonnage of each waste material, these PRNs could completely offset the compliance cost. This scenario is unusual; however, the business may produce enough waste to offset 50%, 60%, 70% of its obligation, which may lead to large financial savings.

Obtaining own waste PRNs from contracted waste reprocessors

If at present your waste reprocessors aren’t allocating PRNs back to your business or compliance scheme, they might:

  • be adding PRN value to your rebate
  • be retaining the PRN value
  • not have acquired approval to write PRNs

Reprocessors require approvals to write PRNs; therefore, the facility your business sends its waste to may not have this or perhaps might not carry out an action at which stage PRNs can be written.

Valpak can help

Our waste management department has been accredited to issue PRNs on material we send for recycling. If you’d like us to look at your current set up to see if we could save your business money, please get in touch.

Join our webinar

If you would like to find out more about how to offset your packaging compliance costs, we’re holding “Cut your compliance costs by offsetting your recycling” webinars throughout the year (The first one will take place on 20 February at 14:00). Our presentation will provide examples of how much revenue could be gained from sending your business’s waste to a reprocessor who can obtain PRNs from it.

All Valpak events can be viewed on our website here.

Contact me

If you’d like one to one advice, please get in contact using my contact details below. I’d be happy to set up a call or visit:

01789 208 764

matt.luntley@valpak.co.uk

 

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Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this weblog represent those of the individual authors and not those of Valpak Limited or any other organisation.