In an effort to go green Danish toy manufacturer Lego has announced that from this year forward botanical pieces including leaves, bushes and trees will be made with a more environmentally friendly plastic sourced from sugarcane.
For now, the new elements make up just 1-2% of the roughly 19 billion Lego pieces made every year. The vast majority will still be manufactured using a crude oil based plastic, but Tim Brooks -- Lego's vice president of environmental responsibility -- believes it's an important start.
"This is a great first step in our ambitious commitment of making all Lego bricks using sustainable materials."
The company has committed to making to making all of their products with sustainable materials by 2030,
Fans of the beloved toy manufacturer were excited to hear the announcement.
This is incredible news!! Been waiting for a while to hear this news!! Excellent job!! 😍👍— Sally S (@SpencersMomma04) March 1, 2018
A self-directed environmentally responsible business is good for the planet. . . Need more businesses who embrace such an ethos. . .— penelope (@tohoton) March 2, 2018
Though some wondered about the true impact of the changeover.
So many questions... is it biodegradable being top of the list, and if indistinguishable from the previous oil-based plastic why not make bricks from it too?— David (@oddlyACTIVE) March 2, 2018
"As a bio-plastic, it can be recycled many times, though it is unlikely to be 100% biodegradable." is hugely confusing. how is PE ever biodegradable? and isn't PE more generally downcycled vs recycled?— MC O'Connor (@mcoc) March 2, 2018
Lego however remains committed to it's goals.
Lego has also formed partnerships with the World Wildlife Fund to develop the market for sustainable bioplastics, and with the Bioplastic Feedstock Alliance, a group committed to fully sourcing sustainable raw materials in plastics manufacturing.
Despite the change in the raw materials used, there is one thing about the classic toy that won't be changing any time soon.