Lego says it will phase out plastic packaging from next year after receiving ‘many’ letters from children.
“As a company who looks to children as our role models, we are inspired by the millions of kids who have called for more urgent action on climate change,” Lego Group chief executive Niels B Christiansen said.
The company will start to ditch single-use plastic from its Lego box packaging from 2021. Instead bricks will be inside recyclable paper.
“We have received many letters from children about the environment asking us to remove single-use plastic packaging,” Christiansen said, adding that children liked the paper bags “as they were environmentally friendly and easy to open.”
It’s estimated Lego uses 90,000 tonnes of plastic in its products and earlier this year a scientific study looking into how long plastic stays in the oceans revealed that Lego bricks could last more than 1,000 years underwater. The company said it would be investing up to $400m (£310m) in an effort to make all of its packaging sustainable by the end of 2025, with a promise to make all its products from sustainable materials by 2030 – including the use of bio-bricks, such as those made from sugar cane.
For the last five years a team of 150 engineers and scientists have been testing plant-based and recycled materials to see if they’re suitable to use in the making of Lego bricks. Lego executive Tim Brooks says the company is testing bio-polyethylene, a type of plastic made from ethanol that’s produced using sugarcane, for its bricks.
“The difficulty is getting to where the bricks have the same colour, the same shine, the same sound,” Mr Brooks said.
Putting the bio-bricks together is the easy bit, pulling them apart is a different story – some early prototypes had to be forced apart using pliers and wrenches.
Source: BBC News