LEGO is Ditching Single-Use Plastic Packaging, Thanks to Some Smart Kids

updated Sep 21, 2020
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Credit: Courtesy of Lego

After receiving multiple requests from kids for LEGO to stop packaging with single-use plastic, the company has decided to take their advice. Last week, LEGO announced it will phase out all plastic bags within its kits with recyclable paper packaging within the next five years.

“We have received many letters from children about the environment asking us to remove single-use plastic packaging,” Niels B. Christiansen, LEGO Group CEO, said in a statement, per Inhabitat. “We have been exploring alternatives for some time and the passion and ideas from children inspired us to begin to make the change.”

Along with this new phasing out of plastic packaging, LEGO is still on the hunt for a more sustainable and durable alternative to the hard plastic used to make their iconic toy bricks. Currently, 2 percent of LEGO bricks, including LEGO trees and bushes, are made from sugar cane.

The hope is that by 2030 LEGO will have improved the plant-based “bio brick,” as they are dubbing the new and improved version, and make all their toys from sustainable materials.

Until then, the company is promoting the longevity of LEGO bricks—they can be played with forever, therefore, there’s no sense in them ending up in landfills. But, if you can’t find use for them anymore, and have no one to give them to, LEGO accepts old bricks and resonates them to kids in need through their LEGO Replay program. Simply box up your old LEGO pieces, print a premade shipping label, and drop the box off at your local post office.

“We cannot lose sight of the fundamental challenges facing future generations,” Christiansen continued. “It’s critical we take urgent action now to care for the planet and future generations.” LEGO plans to employ carbon-neutral manufacturing by 2022 and has installed solar panels to its factories, as well as reduced their water consumption and waste.

Christiansen concluded, “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. We believe they should have access to opportunities to develop the skills necessary to create a sustainable future. We will step up our efforts to use our resources, networks, expertise and platforms to make a positive difference.”