PET Recycling vs. Utilization Rates

PET Recycling vs. Utilization Rates


 

Year Recycling Utilization
1995 39.7% 31.9%
1996 31.7% 26.0%
1997 27.1% 22.7%
1998 24.8% 19.6%
1999 23.7% 18.8%
2000 22.3% 18.0%
2001 22.1% 17.5%
2002 19.9% 15.3%
2003 19.6% 15.5%
2004 21.6% 17.3%
2005 23.1% 18.9%
2006 23.5% 19.4%
2007 24.6% 19.0%
2008 27.0% 20.9%
2009 28.0% 20.9%
2010 29.1% 20.8%
2011 29.3% 19.2%

Source: NAPCOR. 2011 Report on Post Consumer PET Container Recycling Activity

The figure typically reported as a "recycling rate" is usually the proportion of materials collected for recycling. Bales of PET collected for recycling often contain materials such as polypropylene caps, base cups, labels and glue, and other contaminants, which are then weighed and included in the PET recycling rate.

The "Utilization Rate" shown on this page is a more accurate depiction of how much PET actually gets recycled. It measures the amount of "clean PET flake" yielded once the contaminants have been removed.