Mixed Rigid Plastic Recycling
What Is MRP?
“Mixed Rigid Plastic” is a grade of scrap plastic generated by MRF’s. It’s made up of rigid plastics such as buckets, crates, totes, trays, tupperware and other rigid plastics, collected at the curb. MRP – Mixed Rigid Plastics – are sorted, baled and sold for processing.
MRP At The MRF!
Mixed Rigid Plastic, commonly known as “MRP” has become a stable component of post consumer streams of curbside recyclable materials at the MRF. With diversion the goal at all sorting and recycling facilities, Rigid Plastics have received a lot of attention. Approximately 6% of the post-consumer recyclable stream consists of mixed rigid plastics. That includes HDPE Roll-Out Carts, HDPE Crates, HDPE Buckets, PP Laundry Baskets, Lawn Furniture, Tupperware Containers, Etc. While many curbside programs don’t officially include Mixed Rigid Plastics, the Material Recovery Facilities (MRF’s) still need to handle the inbound tons. In order to produce a product that processor mills can handle – the MRF’s need to follow a set of quality specification guidelines to ensure consistent movement and top market price.
Mixed Rigid Plastics – What Happens Next?
Mixed Rigid Plastics are bulky in nature and not suitable for automated sorting using cutting edge optical sorters. Instead, they are pulled out of the waste stream during a presort to be baled later. This is done with old fashioned manual labor on the tipping floor. Items are consolidated in a roll off or bunker until enough accumulates to make a bale. Once baled, Mixed Rigid Plastic material is sold in truckload quantities to brokers and processors both domestic and overseas. Mixed Rigid Plastic gets processed her in the United States. Loads with excessive contamination levels have historically been exported to Southeast Asia. Today MRF’s are cleaning up their streams to avoid exporting!
Plastic Recycling Prices
Denser bales mean higher weights on a truck which translates to a higher price for materials paid to the shipper due to the reduced freight cost per pound. Using a 2 Ram Horizontal Baler is ideal to making the right shipping weight, over 40,000 lbs on a 53’ Dry Van Trailer or 40’ High Cube Export Container.
Value Of Scrap Plastic
Contamination is a big factor that impacts the value of Mixed Rigid Plastics! Only clean material that is 95% pure will be accepted for sorting and reprocessing. A load with over 5% contamination usually results in a rejection by domestic processors. Typical contaminants in Mixed Rigid Plastic include Fiber, Styrofoam, Metal, Wood, Rubber, Excessive Debris (Sand, Gravel, Rocks),Moisture and PET Bottles / PET Clamshells.
Mixed Rigid Plastic MRP Processing
Mixed Rigid Plastic are made up of mostly HDPE and PP. PET (Polyester) is a contaminant that sinks during the wash process and should not be included. Metal contamination can also be a real problem. Metal parts such as axles on a roll out cart can tear up the blades on a shredder and must be kept out. Styrofoam floats in the wash tank like the PP and HDPE. It is impossible to effectively separate out after grinding. It’s important to have a Mixed Rigid Plastic bale completely free of Styrofoam. The less residue, the higher the throughput and yield. That means a cleaner product and a higher price to the MRF.
Mixed Rigid Plastic – Selling MRP
Companies that are looking to start diverting Mixed Rigid Plastic should consult an expert to get the program started! Scrap Management Inc has been helping MRFs set up diversion programs for Mixed Rigid Plastic and helping them consistently move the material to market at the highest available price. If you’re already sorting and baling your Mixed Rigid Plastic and wish to get a quality assessment or price quote – send 3-5 pictures to Scrap Management Inc by email or by clicking “here” and get a picked up price quote within 24 hours. For more information and a spec sheet, please visit the MRP Program page. We’re here to answer any and all question on the phone, give us a call today!