Responsible Consumption and Production

LEGO Switch Plastic Packaging for Paper

LEGO have announced their plans to phase out the use of plastic packaging over the next 5 years. The small, single-use plastic sachets used to hold LEGO pieces will be swapped with recyclable paper bags certified by the Forest Stewardship Council. The Danish toymaker is committing to a number of sustainable targets over the course of the next 10 years.

The move toward sustainability has come after the company reportedly received letters from children and customers imploring them to do more in their environmental efforts. Chief Executive, Niels B Christiansen has said “We have been exploring [sustainable] alternatives for some time and the passion and ideas from children inspired us to begin to make the change.”

The toymaker has also declared that all of their products will be made from sustainable materials by 2030, with the aid of a £310 million investment. LEGO bricks are currently made from an oil-based plastic that does not decompose. Instead, it breaks down into smaller pieces (microplastics) which contribute to plastic pollution. Microplastics are easily consumed by wildlife, resulting in plastic entering into the food chain and damaging the health of animals, humans and the environment.

LEGO have been experimenting with a variety of sustainable materials, such as a plant-based plastic, bio-polyethylene, sourced from sugar cane. However, they have faced issues of durability and functional replication of their original bricks. They are determined to prevail, nonetheless, and on top of their other targets, aim to achieve net zero carbon by the end of 2022 and eradicate waste by the end of 2025.

Posted by Iona Chichester 15 October 2020

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