Recycling PET (polyethylene terephthalate) plastic bottles has become an important environmental initiative in the current context of growing global concern for sustainability. There are already many recycling plants for PET bottles that have started programs to recycle plastics today.

Importance of recycled PET bottle flake grades

However, one of the key aspects associated with PET bottle recycling is the quality grade of the PET bottle flakes, and it is important for PET recycling plants to understand clearly the finished price of plastic recycling. These grades are usually differentiated by color, from highest to lowest being white clear flake, white blue flake, green flake, yellow flake, and finally miscellaneous color flake. These grades not only reflect the appearance of PET bottle flakes, but are also directly related to their recyclability and market value.

Common PET flakes grades

White Clear Flakes: These are the highest grade of PET bottle flakes. They are almost completely transparent, of high quality and are usually made from undyed PET bottles. Due to their high quality, they have the highest recycling value and therefore the highest price.

PET bottle flakes

White-blue flakes: White-blue flakes are a slight downgrade from white-clear flakes, but are still a high-quality PET material. They are usually made from certain PET bottles with a blue tint. Although less expensive than white clear flakes, they still have a high market value.

Clean PET flakes are the final products of plastic bottle reycling line
Clean PET flakes are the final products of plastic bottle reycling line

Green Flakes: Green flakes are made from green PET bottles and they are clearly identifiable by their color. Although slightly lower in quality, they can still be used to make a range of PET products.

pet flakes

Yellow flakes: Yellow flakes are usually made from yellow PET bottles, which are of lower quality and therefore less expensive. Nevertheless, they can still be recycled and used to make several minor PET products.

Miscellaneous Color Flakes: These are the lowest grade of PET bottle flakes and are usually made from PET bottles of various mixed colors, such as red, orange and purple. These are not picked at all when recycled, they are of lower quality and have limited recyclable value, hence the lowest price.

How to improve your recycled PET bottle flake grade?

Effective sorting and collection systems: A critical first step is to establish an efficient sorting and collection system for PET bottles. This can be achieved by setting up recycling bins, recycling stations and collection centers to ensure that only high-quality PET bottles are recycled.

Doing the cleaning step: Use professional plastic washing machines to thoroughly clean and treat recycled PET bottles to remove dirt, labels, caps and other impurities. This improves the quality of PET bottle flakes.

Color sorting: Establishing a color sorting system for PET bottles, a color sorter can be used to reject plastic flakes that do not meet the color requirements to ensure that high quality PET flakes are not mixed.