Headimage abstract

Recycled content in PET bottles increased significantly

The recycled content in PET beverage bottles has risen to nearly 50 percent on average, according to a study by GVM, Euwid reports.


An average of 44.8 percent PET recyclate was used in the production of beverage bottles in Germany in 2021. This is the result of the study by GVM Gesellschaft für Verpackungsmarktforschung "Aufkommen und Verwertung von PET-Getränkeflaschen in Deutschland 2021," which was commissioned by Forum PET and the IK Industrievereinigung Kunststoffverpackungen. Compared to figures from GVM's last survey in 2019, this means that recyclate use in PET bottles has increased by more than 10 percent from 34.4 percent. However, consumption of PET for bottle production fell by 4.5 percent, or 21,400 metric tons, to 446,000 metric tons compared to 2019, which GVM said was also due to bottles becoming lighter. In addition, declines in demand and substitution by glass bottles would also have resulted in a decrease in PET volumes. At 98.7 percent, the overall return rate for deposit-bearing non-refillable and refillable PET bottles has also reached a very high level again. According to the study, an average of 94.8 percent of PET bottles were recycled in 2021. At 97.7 percent, the recycling rate for deposit-refunded non-refillable and refillable PET bottles was even higher. According to the study, around 438,000 tons of PET beverage bottles were recycled in Germany, including 15,000 imported tons. At 190,500 tons or 44.7 percent, the largest share was used in the production of new bottles, 114,000 tons (26.8 percent) went to the film industry and 48,000 tons (11.3 percent) to the fiber industry. More than 73,000 tons of PET recyclate was used in other sectors such as non-food bottles, strapping and injection molded products, according to the study. About 33,600 tons of PET from sorting and reprocessing, as well as misdirected into residual waste, ended up in incineration.



  • Euwid Recycling und Entsorgung 15/2023 (April 12, 2023)
  • Photo: © Ariane Sept /

Go back