Recycling of PVC

According to the plastics recycling report released by Plastics SA, the recycling of PVC products in South Africa recorded a year-on-year increase of 9.5 % in 2020. Despite very difficult trading conditions owing to global raw material shortages and supply chain issues, high material costs, interrupted electricity supply due to load shedding and the ravaging effects of Covid-19 on the industry, PVC was one of the only plastic polymers in the country that managed to report an increase of its annual recycling figures.

The total domestic demand for PVC in 2020 was 141,800 tonnes, of which 76,000 tonnes went into the manufacturing of rigids (compounds, dry blends etc.) and 65,800 tonnes for flexibles.

Although the virgin market decreased by 8.2 % during this year, a total amount of 21,433 tons of PVC were recycled, of which 13,440 tonnes were flexible (PVC-P) and 7,992 tonnes were rigid (PVC-U).

Raw material shortages drive recyclate demand

The past two years has seen the global PVC supply badly impacted by the pandemic, lockdown measures, hurricanes and other natural disasters in the Northern hemisphere, as well as other domestic and international events. This has resulted in low production of chlorine, raw material shortages and PVC prices reaching a 35 year high. On the flip side, it has also helped to drive the demand for recyclate, improve our own cradle-to-cradle infrastructure and develop our circular economy.

End-markets of r-PVC

South Africa currently has more than 40 recyclers which granulate and pelletise vinyl products for re-use in flooring and tiles, shoe soles or other PVC products.

The biggest market (40%) for PVC recyclate continues to be the footwear industry where it is used to manufacture shoes, soles and gumboots, followed by the building and construction industry (38%) and agriculture (12%).

Minimum standards for r-PVC

SAVA is currently working with international counterparts in the USA and elsewhere in the world to develop clear guidelines and minimum standards for the recycling of PVC products. This includes building and construction materials removed during renovations and demolitions that may include legacy additives. By knowing which raw materials were used in the original production process, we will be able to assist recyclers with guidance for safe reprocessing and end-markets where these materials can safely be re-used without any risk to human or environmental health.

Do you have PVC products

that need to be collected and recycled?

Please send an email to along with a short description of the material, tonnage and collection address (if possible, please also provide a photograph of the material) and we will put you into contact with a recycler.

Join our network for PVC recyclers

South Africa currently has more than 40 recyclers which granulate and pelletise vinyl products for re-use in flooring and tiles, shoe soles or other PVC products. By joining our network of recyclers, you will be able to display the “Green Tick” as proof of safe reprocessing and manufacturing practices, and get enjoy the benefit of being one of our preferred partners to whom we refer enquiries and leads for PVC materials that  are available for collection and recycling.

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Postal Address: Private Bag X68, Halfway House, 1680


Tel: (+27 21) 531-0313 or (+27 71) 083-5219

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