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As is many industries, we use many recycling and waste abbreviations in the waste plastics industry.  I thought it might be helpful to document some of them.

I have included the key materials that are most relevant to Aylesbury Granulation Services, and that are most widely recycled, however for a much more comprehensive list, please visit

Material abbreviations

PE           Polyethylene.

At Aylesbury Granulation Services we tend to process a good deal of HDPE, which is high density polyethylene.  This is used in a very wide range of products, including wheelie bins, crates and barrels. See

PP           Polypropylene.

Aylesbury Granulation Services also process a significant amount of PP.  This polymer is used widely in applications such as chairs, seating, crates and cases. Its properties allow it to hinge without breaking.

PVC        Polyvinylchloride.

PVC is heavily used in construction and other industries for pipes, cabling and signage.  In its un-plasticised state it is called uPVC and is used for window and door frames. Aylesbury Granulation Services offer a free-to-drop hub for uPVC and recycle around 120 tonnes per year.  See

ABS        Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene

ABS is used heavily in the automotive industry and can be found in many aspects of a vehicle, both inside and outside.  It is also used to make LEGO and is used in many 3D printing machines.

PC           Polycarbonate

PC is very strong and can produce optically clear products, they are light weight and have high impact resistance. As such PC is used for the manufacture of headlights, as it is used for glasses and goggles.  We are delighted to work closely with a manufacturer of polycarbonate products and offer them a closed loop service, which ensures that their material returns back to them for re-use in their own manufacturing process.


Other abbreviations


BPF        British Plastics Federation

RDF        Refuse derived fuel – fuel made from excess rubbish

DMR      Clean materials such as paper, cardboard, plastic bottles, drinks cans and glass bottles to be sorted and recycled

EfW        Energy from Waste – energy generated by burning materials, which can include plastic

EA           Environment Agency –  responsible for the protection and enhancement of the environment.

CV          Calorific value – reference to materials for burning. Plastics tend to have a high CV

EWC       European Waste Catalogue – this is a list of wastes that can be transported handled or treated, so that track can be kept of wastes. Aylesbury Granulation Services process codes 17 02 03, 19 12 04 and 20 01 39

PRN       Packaging Recovery Note – a note which provides evidence of waste packaging being recycled. The system is easily abused and in need of an overhaul

RORO    Roll-on, roll-off skips – these are normally 20-40 yard skips and are useful for larger waste streams

FEL         Front end loader – these are non-wheeled bins that are often used for commercial businesses

LFT         Land fill tax – this is a tax applied to all waste that ends up in landfill. In 2018 the rate was £88.95 pmt

PMT       per metric tonne – this is how waste is charged or rebated

WTN      Waste Transfer Note – these are a legal requirement for the movement of any waste and should be kept for 7 years

PPE        Personal protective equipment – this is required in all industries but particularly in the waste industry where there are many hazards

CIWM   Chartered Institute of Waste Management – professional body for the waste management industry

TPA        Tonnes per year – a measure of weight

WEEE     Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Directive – this sets directive collection, recycling and recovery targets for all types of electrical goods

There are many more recycling and waste abbreviations, but hopefully this list gives a feel of the most commonly used with regard to plastic recycling.