How much do you know about metal recycling? What is metal recycling? Why recycle metals? How does the metal recycling process take place, and what technologies and equipment are needed? What is the current situation in the global metal recycling industry and what are the challenges they face? Let us take a closer look at metal recycling!

Definition of metal recycling

Metal recycling with the metal recycling machine refers to the systematic collection of metals after they have reached their own useful life and sorting them according to their type and quality. Then it is processed, purified, and finally made into a new product.

Metal can be recycled and reused many times without changing its own properties. According to the American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI), steel is the most recycled material in the world. Other highly recycled metals include aluminum, copper, silver, brass, and gold.

Metal scraps processing in large plants
metal scraps processing in large plants

Types of recycled metals by metal balers

Metals can be classified as ferrous or non-ferrous metals. Ferrous metal is a combination of iron and carbon. Some common ferrous metals include carbon steel, alloy steel, wrought iron and cast iron. On the other hand, non-ferrous metals include aluminum, copper, lead, zinc, and tin. Precious metals are also non-ferrous metals. The most common precious metals include gold, platinum, silver, iridium and palladium.

Why do we recycle metals?

Metal is a valuable material that can be recycled again and again without degrading its performance. Scrap metal is valuable, which prompts people to collect and sell it. In addition to economic factors, scrap metal recycling is also imperative in environmental protection.


The recycling of metals with the metal scrap baling machine helps to conserve natural resources, and at the same time, processing scrap metal requires less energy than manufacturing new products from original materials. Metal recycling emits very little carbon dioxide and other harmful gases. More importantly, metal recycling can save money and reduce production costs in the manufacturing industry.

Global metal recycling related data

  1. Although almost every metal can be recycled many times without destroying its performance, only 30% of metals in the world are currently recycled. Unfortunately, the remaining 70% is discarded after only one use.
  2. Nearly 40% of the global steel industry uses recycled scrap steel.
  3. In the United States, approximately 42% of crude steel is made from recycled materials. In addition, about 100 million scrap iron cans and tin cans are generated every day.
  4. Steel is the most recycled material in the world, partly because they have the opportunity to recover into large structures and are easy to reprocess. Using magnets can easily separate them from the trash.
  5. The UK metal recycling industry is worth £5.6 billion and has more than 8,000 employees.
  6. Around 400 million tons of metal are recycled every year.
  7. Currently, aluminum cans are the most recycled consumer product in the United States.
  8. The energy wasted by throwing away an aluminum can is equivalent to gasoline-filled with the same aluminum can.