LEGO is investing $150 million to ditch plastic & start creating their blocks with sustainable materials

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LEGO has announced a plan to develop sustainable manufacturing materials that would allow the toy company to ditch plastic forever. The Denmark-based company is investing millions to create a Sustainable Materials Centre to employ over 100 people who will carry out the search for a better building block. The company aims to identify a sustainable plastic alternative by 2030.

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Over the next 15 years, LEGO will invest around $150 million to find a “new, sustainable, raw material” to use for the production of LEGO bricks and some aspects of packaging. “This is a major step for the LEGO Group on our way towards achieving our 2030 ambition on sustainable materials,” said Jørgen Vig Knudstorp, CEO and President of the LEGO Group. He adds, “We have already taken important steps to reduce our carbon footprint and leave a positive impact on the planet by reducing the packaging size, by introducing FSC certified packaging and through our investment in an offshore wind farm. Now we are accelerating our focus on materials.”

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LEGO bricks have been made from the same familiar, foot-piercing plastic since 1963. Each year, the company reportedly uses more than 6 billion tons of plastic to create its toys. Finding a more sustainable material to build those blocks will reduce the company’s footprint dramatically. The Sustainable Materials Centre will take a little time to form, and LEGO plans to launch research sometime in 2016. Sounds “awesome” to us.

via The Huffington Post

Images via David Lofink and GiocoVisione

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12 Responses to “LEGO is investing $150 million to ditch plastic & start creating their blocks with sustainable materials”

  1. Raibert says:

    Unlike most plastic used Lego are designed to be used forever not as disposable that is a plus to start with.

  2. rainymo says:

    I have Lego toys from 30 years ago and they are just as sturdy now as they were when I purchased them. Spend the $150 Million taking care of the senior citizen and wounded soldiers!

  3. Sirius Dogstar says:

    While I applaud the sentiment, I too still have my Lego bricks from 30+ years ago. Now my children and I play with them. I consider the plastic of Legos bricks not as disposable, but durable.

  4. 60six says:

    It’s not that it doesn’t last. It’s made from massive amounts of oil, as most plastics are. Hence logo’s previous relationship to Shell. They knew the association was bad publicity and now they have gone a step further to finding a sustainable material to make it from. Good on them (even if it is publicity focused).

  5. fredkirsch says:

    Hemp plastics!

  6. Smmegs10 says:

    @fredkirsh I was thinking the same thing! Hemp plastics are the way to go :)

  7. MimB says:

    this can be done now wth hemp plastic – no need to wait until 2030.
    http://www.hempplastic.com/a

  8. ishep says:

    “Each year, the company reportedly uses more than 6 billion tons of plastic to create its toys.”

    Surely that can’t be right? A ton of plastic for almost every person on Earth every year? My kids have a lot of LEGO, but that seems way out, even allowing for manufacturing wastage!

  9. GeorgieBoy says:

    Resins can be made from hemp. So can clothing and paper etc. Hemp products are biodegradable too.

  10. wibble82 says:

    “Each year, the company reportedly uses more than 6 billion tons of plastic to create its toys.”

    I can believe its a lot, but maybe you’ve got your numbers mixed up a little bit? I mean, picture how much plastic 1 tonne is, then picture where exactly that is going?

    That link you posted suggested 19 billion lego elements per year – that’s ~3 pieces of lego per person. Unless they’re pieces of lego that’re made from 300kg pieces of plastic, the numbers seem wrong.

    Not that this isn’t AWESOME news, but maybe ponder your numbers just a little bit?

  11. VA115 says:

    Plastics can also be made from corn. Resin uses PLA.

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