If you live on Earth, most likely you’ve heard of LEGO.
But, did you know just how closely the eponymous building blocks and our planet are intertwined?
The Denmark-based block business has been cranking out pieces made of plants, resembling plants. LEGO trees, leaves, and bushes are now made from plant-based plastic.
“At the LEGO Group we want to make a positive impact on the world around us, and are working hard to make great play products for children using sustainable materials,” said Tim Brooks, Vice President, Environmental Responsibility at the LEGO Group. “We are proud that the first LEGO elements made from sustainably sourced plastic are in production and will be in LEGO boxes this year. This is a great first step in our ambitious commitment of making all LEGO bricks using sustainable materials.”
The new plant pieces are made with polyethylene derived from sugar cane. The result is a soft, durable plastic that stands up just as well as the billions of other building blocks they can snap onto.
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“Children and parents will not notice any difference in the quality or appearance of the new elements, because plant-based polyethylene has the same properties as conventional polyethylene,” Brooks said.
LEGO has joined the Bioplastic Feedstock Alliance (BFA), an initiative of the World Wildlife Foundation, to make sure its bioplastics are sourced sustainably, and do not contribute to habitat destruction.
“It is essential that companies in each industry find ways to responsibly source their product materials and help ensure a future where people, nature, and the economy thrive,” said Alix Grabowski, a senior program officer at WWF. “The LEGO Group’s decision to pursue sustainably sourced bio-based plastics represents an incredible opportunity to reduce dependence on finite resources, and their work with the Bioplastic Feedstock Alliance will allow them to connect with other companies to continue to think creatively about sustainability.”
Watch the video below to see more of these new plant-based LEGOs.
Matthew Russell is a West Michigan native and with a background in journalism, data analysis, cartography and design thinking. He likes to learn new things and solve old problems whenever possible, and enjoys bicycling, going to the dog park, spending time with his daughter, and coffee.