Polystyrene Recycling For Your Business

Is Polystyrene Recyclable?

Yes, polystyrene is 100% recyclable with the help of our specialist team. Over 10,000 tonnes of EPS (Expanded Polystyrene) are recycled each year in the UK. This waste type is slow to biodegrade when disposed of improperly.
However, few local authority services will deal with waste polystyrene. If you are a company generating polystyrene waste, we are here to help transport waste to recycling centres.

EPS Recycling Service

Expanded polystyrene (EPS) is a type of foam that you might commonly know as Styrofoam.
This material is commonly used in the construction industry, for uses such as building insulation in walls, roofs and floors. EPS benefits from an air-filled structure with high impact and water resistance, making it perfect for building materials. The recycling process for polystyrene usually involves sorting, cleaning, shredding, compacting and reprocessing. The recycled polystyrene pellets can then be used as raw material to produce new products.
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How Our Polystyrene Recycling Service Works

Contact our team at Plastic Expert providing your quantity of polystyrene, location, photos & how the material are stored.
We’ll then prepare a quote for your recyclable plastics and email this to you. Once you’re happy to go ahead with a collection we will book transport.
Collections will then be made on a day to suit your business schedule. Please let us know of any loading or access requirements in advance.
Full waste transfer documentation will be provided on collection. All of your waste items will then be fully recycled into new products.


We helped a construction company in Bristol recycle 4+ tonnes of EPS (in briquette form). Our team provided the site with a collection within a few days of the initial enquiry.

What Is Polystyrene?

Petroleum is made into a liquid hydrocarbon called styrene, which is then converted into polystyrene. This is through a chemical process known as suspension polymerization. Due to this type of plastic structure, polystyrene is incredibly difficult to degrade.
Polystyrene is a hydrocarbon that is used for a wide array of applications. Some examples include food packaging material, food trays, and other consumer polystyrene packaging such as polystyrene cups. Extruded polystyrene (XPS) is often used in ceiling insulation. Polystyrene’s toxic nature also makes some products hazardous, meaning they must be disposed of professionally.
You may also have EPS packaging which is formed as a white polystyrene foam produced from solid beads. Recycled EPS waste can be turned into items such as frames and other materials such as insulation.
Expanded polystyrene (EPS) is the most common type of polystyrene found on the modern market. This material is widely used to package food and drink goods, and also in the construction industry. It adds a robust foam barrier to packaging that can keep your goods safe during transport.

The Difference Between Expanded and Extruded Polystyrene

Expanded and extruded polystyrene are both types of polystyrene foam.
Extruded polystyrene foam, also known as XPS, is made using a manufacturing process where polystyrene beads are heated and then extruded into shape. This process allows for a closed-cell structure, making XPS a good insulation material.
Expanded polystyrene, also known as EPS, is made by heating polystyrene beads, causing them to expand and take on a foamy structure. This forms a less dense and more lightweight structure than XPS.

How Is Polystyrene Recycled?

There are three common methods of recycling, known as granulation, compacting, and densifying. They work as follows:
Granulation: Lighter density forms of polystyrene can go through a machine known as a granulator. This machine separates down to the tiny beads that make it up, which are then are mixed into unused polystyrene granules.
In these cases, there is no reduction to the strength, insulating properties, or other qualities of the material. Recycled EPS has all the same benefits of brand new polystyrene after it has gone through granulation.
Compacting: For denser forms of polystyrene, they have to go into a compactor that presses them together. The resulting material is a very heavy and thick bale of pure polystyrene. These bales go through a machine that then shreds them into new General Purpose Polystyrene Pallets.
Densifying: There are other methods of recycling that are used less frequently, too. For instance, expanded polystyrene can be fed into a machine called a foam densifier.
After it’s shredded, this machine exposes the foam to heat and pressure. Once melted down into a paste, the material that is then cooled into a block of solid polystyrene, extracting all of the air.
The blocks of polystyrene can then be shredded into new general purpose polystyrene pallets.

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Expanded Polystyrene Recycling Collection

Polystyrene can be recycled as many as twenty times without harming its physical properties. It retains strength, durability and structural qualities. By recycling polystyrene, we can reduce this material’s environmental impact and ensure sustainable waste disposal methods.
Book a collection for your business’s plastic waste with our team today. Please note, we do not provide services for household waste. You will need to contact your local council to find out whether to dispose of it using your recycling bin or general waste bin.

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