Recycling code

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General recycling symbol

The recycling code is used to identify various materials for return to the recycling cycle . The code consists of the recycling symbol : three (often green) arrows - which are supposed to reflect the recycling cycle - and a number that identifies the material. In most cases, an abbreviation is also given below that indicates the material group. Because this abbreviation can vary (e.g. PET but also PETE is possible), the number is the decisive factor.

The identifications for plastics (numbers 01 to 07) were first published by the Society of the Plastics Industry (SPI) in 1988 under the name SPI resin identification coding system . The letter abbreviations for plastics are based on the standardized abbreviations for plastics .

In order to reduce the sorting effort, some of the recyclables are pre-sorted with the support of the consumer before they are recycled. For this purpose, many cities have set up recycling centers for the disposal of recyclable materials . These can be used in addition to the “ Green Dot ” system established in Germany and the disposal of old glass at the appropriate collection points.

In Germany, the Packaging Act of 5 July 2017 ( Federal Law Gazette I p. 2234 ) has been regulating numbers and abbreviations for identifying packaging material in Section 6 since 2019. The system was introduced in the European Union by decision 97/129 / EC.

The same structure in relation to polymers is found in ASTM D7611. There is also a Chinese standard for plastics with a much finer subdivision of the various polymers.

Recycling numbers

Recycling number Abbreviation Name of the material Use / recycle too
1-PETE PET or PETE Polyethylene terephthalate Polyester fibers, films, bottles for food and other liquids, food packaging
2-HDPE PE-HD or HDPE High density polyethylene Plastic bottles, trash cans, plastic pipes, synthetic wood
3-V PVC Polyvinyl chloride Window frames and pipes
4-LDPE PE-LD or LDPE Low-density polyethylene Plastic bags, buckets, soap dispenser bottles, plastic tubes, foils
5-pp PP Polypropylene Bumpers, interior trim, industrial fibers, food packaging, DVD and Blu-ray cases
6-PS PS Polystyrene Toys, flower pots, video cassettes, CD cases, ashtrays, suitcases, expanded polystyrene, food packaging
7-OTHER O (OTHER) Other plastics such as polycarbonate (PC), polyamide (PA), acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS), polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA), polylactide (PLA), among others No. 7 is defined neither in the German packaging ordinance nor in the European packaging directive. The principle is: The labeling is voluntary, but if I label, then according to the specifications. So No. 7 can not be occupied as the mood takes you. The basic problem here is the outdated legal basis. B. also LLDPE and other materials used in plastics processing such as EVOH or adhesion promoters in this list.
20-PAP PAP Corrugated cardboard packagings
21-PAP Other cardboard packagings
22-PAP paper Newspapers, magazines etc.
40-FE FE steel steel
41-ALU ALU aluminum
50-FOR FOR Wood
51-FOR cork Corks (in bottles), insulating material, floor coverings
60-TEX TEX cotton
61-TEX jute
70-GL GL Colorless glass "New" glass
71-GL Green glass
72-GL Brown glass
80 Composites : C X
with X = Abbreviation of the main component
Paper and cardboard / various metals
81 Paper and cardboard / plastic
82 Paper and cardboard / aluminum
83 Paper and cardboard / tinplate
84 C / PAP Paper and cardboard / plastic / aluminum
85 Paper and cardboard / plastic / aluminum / tinplate
90 C / LDPE Plastic / aluminum
91 Plastic / tinplate
92 Plastic / various metals
95 Glass / plastic
96 Glass / aluminum
97 Glass / tinplate
98 Glass / various metals

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. § 6 Marking to identify the packaging material
  2. Decision of the Commission of January 28, 1997 establishing a labeling system for packaging materials in accordance with Directive 94/62 / EC of the European Parliament and of the Council on packaging and packaging waste
  3. ASTM D7611 / D7611M-19, Standard Practice for Coding Plastic Manufactured Articles for Resin Identification
  4. ^ Standardization Administration of the People's Republic of China (SAC) GB16288, 2008. Marking of plastics products. Chinese Standard Publishing House, Beijing; 2008, cited from EJ Hunt, C. Zhang, N. Anzalone, and JM Pearce. Polymer Recycling Codes for Distributed Manufacturing with 3-D Printers, Resources, Conservation and Recycling 97, pp. 24–30 (2015). doi : 10.1016 / j.resconrec.2015.02.004