After what looked like a little softening in the RPET market in mid-summer, prices have climbed back up where they are expected to stay at least through October.

After what looked like a little softening in the RPET market in mid-summer, prices have climbed back up where they are expected to stay at least through October. On the West Coast, where clear pellet prices—around 85¢/lb—are a bit lower than on the East Coast, the market gets stronger by the week, sources say. With new recycling capacity arriving, bale prices are going up continuously. “There’s just not enough bales to go around. Demand is just strong, and the Chinese are buying like crazy,” said one observer.
 
Another source said that the seasonally strong PET bottle market is helping right now: “Even though there is a lot of new capacity looking for bottles, they will get what they need without having to overpay—at least through October.”
 
The story is more of the same on the East Coast. Prices softened slightly from June to July. But by mid-August things turned around. “The market is solid, it’s steady. I don’t think prices are going to go up, but I don’t expect a dramatic decline either. I think it is going to be stable for a little bit,” one source said.
 
Most of the flake on East Coast is going into FDA markets, a recycler said. While pellet prices are strong he noted, “We need to get 90¢/lb to get back my costs. Green flake is very strong. Prices are all above 70¢.”