LEGO is the next brand to commit to reducing their plastic output for a better future. By 2030, the Danish brand hopes to be using an ecologically sustainable alternative to the plastic resin (ABS) currently used to manufacture their toy bricks. That may seem like a long time, but remember LEGO produce between 30 to 60 billion blocks on average a year.
Allan Rasmussen, Project Manager at LEGO said, “I need to find a material that is just as good as this one. “I need to find a material that will be just as good in 50 years, because these are passed down from generation to generation.” And LEGO think Hemp may just be the answer.
The brand say they are still in the early stages of development though. The team is still perfecting the ‘clutch power’ of their sustainable blocks - the key ability that allows blocks to stay together firmly until you want to separate them.
The majority of plastics currently manufactured in the world uses petroleum cellulose which is hazardous to humans, animals and our planet. Cellulose made from organic compounds are biodegradable and hemp is an ideal base material with a high cellulose content (between 70-80%), according to Hemp Plastics.
Apart from all the positive environmental qualities already mentioned, growing hemp produces oxygen, grows fast, harvests in four months, resistant to most pests and requires less processing. Hemp Plastic is definitely not a new thing, but to see it on such a big scale with a brand that relies on plastic so heavily, it really is an exciting announcement.
Just last year LEGO took their first steps for more sustainable production. They produced the first ever plant-based LEGO pieces that joined the regular plastic blocks in boxes. And yes, they are trees and bushes themselves.