Lego Is Making Sustainable Eco-Friendly Blocks Made of Sugar Cane Bioplastic

LEGO introduced a new line of building block toys made from plant-based plastic that is sustainable and biodegradable. The new products will go on sale later this year, and are “technically identical” to the traditional version, apart from the toll they will take on the planet.

The toys are made from a sugar-cane derived plastic, the company said on Thursday. The plant-plastic is soft yet durable, and also flexible enough to make it ideal for the classic toy. To usher in the new era of sustainable LEGO toys, the debut box will contain a “botanical element,” such as trees and leaves, LEGO added.

03_02_flowers LEGO is now fun and good for the enviroment. Rich Polk/Getty Images for Safe Kids Worldwide

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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,” said LEGO spokesman Tim Brooks.

Plastic, such as that used in many children’s toys, has taken a toll on the environment. Environmental Health News reported that plastics that we only use for a short time in our personal lives are able to stay in landfills for centuries. Plastic can survive in water for thousands of years.

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LEGO hopes that their plant-based alternative is the first step in an ambitious goal of making all of the company's products from sustainable materials, Brooks said.

“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 in a statement, a senior program officer at WWF, which has worked with LEGO group on the project.