Recycling process: PCR (Post Consumer Recycled)

Post Consumer Recycled (PCR)

In this day and age, as the world's mountains of waste grow and the need for renewable resources increases, recycling is becoming more and more central to environmental awareness. Recycling not just as a concept, but as a necessary practice to reduce the harmful effects of waste on our environment. A particularly noteworthy approach in this context is the Post Consumer Recycled (PCR) system.
By reusing materials that have already been used by consumers, PCR enables a second life for products and reduces the need for new raw materials.


Post Consumer Recycled (PCR) refers to materials that have been collected, sorted and recycled after their original use by the end consumer and then returned to the production process. Unlike pre-consumer or industrial waste, PCR materials come from products that have already been used by the consumer and would otherwise become waste.

Advantages of PCR

  • Environmental protection: reusing materials reduces the need for new production, which saves energy and reduces CO2 emissions.
  • Resource efficiency: The use of PCR materials reduces the dependence on raw materials and thus minimises the negative environmental impact of raw material extraction.
  • Waste reduction: converting used products into new products significantly reduces the amount of waste that ends up in landfills.
  • Economic benefits: The process can create jobs in the collection, sorting and processing of recyclable materials. In addition, companies that use PCR materials can often benefit from lower material costs and a positive image.
  • Promoting a circular economy: PCR promotes the concept of a circular economy, where products and materials are kept in circulation for as long as possible in order to utilise their maximum value.

Areas of application for PCR

  • Packaging materials: many companies use PCR plastics for their packaging as this is both environmentally and economically beneficial.
  • Textiles: PCR materials, especially from plastic bottles, can be processed into polyester fibres used in the manufacture of clothing and other textile products.
  • Building materials: Some companies use PCR materials to produce durable and environmentally friendly building materials.
  • Paper products: Waste paper can be recycled into PCR paper, which is used in many printing and packaging applications.
  • Garden products: PCR materials are often used in garden products, from compost bins to garden furniture.
At the REKS recycling plant, such processes are implemented to recycle waste from supermarket chains in particular. The commitment to PCR processes demonstrates the growing awareness of the need to use resources more efficiently and minimise the environmental impact of human activities.

PCR in plastics manufacturing

Plastic waste is one of the biggest challenges in waste management as it takes centuries to decompose if not treated properly. PCR plays a crucial role in the plastics industry. After plastic products have been used by consumers, they can be collected, cleaned and processed into new plastic pellets. These recycled pellets can then be reused in plastics production, which not only reduces the need for new production, but also saves significant amounts of energy. PCR plastics offer consistent quality and can be used as a substitute for conventional plastics in many applications. The integration of PCR into plastics production is a significant step towards a more sustainable and resource-efficient industry.

Key points

Aspect Description
Definition Materials that are recycled by the end user after use and returned to the production process.
Environmental protection Reduction of new production and reduction of CO2 emissions.
Resource efficiency Reduce dependence on raw materials and reduce environmental impact.
Plastic production Recycling of plastic waste into new, high-quality plastic products.

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