Upcycling or recycling with recovery
Recycling of consumer products is now a familiar action. At home, we sort cardboard, plastics and metals. These sorted materials then enter a process of cleaning, secondary sorting and then remelting/shaping, etc. The "new" materials are then re-injected into the standard production circuit.
Much of the waste we produce is still not recycled or recyclable due to a lack of industrial alternatives or potential for reuse(46.8% in 2016, external link).
Unlike recycling,upcycling provides for the immediate reuse of waste that is not sorted but rather reintroduced directly into a manufacturing process. In other words, with upcycling, we recover waste that is in fact useful material, in order to save it from the incinerator in particular. In short, reuse greatly reduces our consumption of natural resources.
The PETG used in our workshop for 3D printing, for example, is a recycled material. On the other hand, recycled wood (pallets, old furniture, etc.) is upcycled.