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LEGO takes new step towards sustainability with How2Recycle

The LEGO Group has taken further steps towards environmental sustainability in the US, having signed with the Sustainable Packaging Coalition’s How2Recycle programme.

The toymaker has declared its plans to begin labelling its toy packaging for US consumer this year with the How2Recycle label.

By the end of 2018, LEGO says that more than 60 per cent of the company’s new toy boxes will have the How2Recycle label and it plans to extend the labelling to nearly all of its North American products by next year.

“LEGO bricks are designed to be reused and handed down through generations, but not everyone keeps their LEGO boxes,” said Tim Brooks, the company’s vice president, environmental responsibility.

“Implementing the How2Recycle label on LEGO packaging is an important step in minimising landfill through clear guidelines, encouraging consumers to responsibly recycle their packaging.”

The LEGO Group says the company is currently working on developing recycling labels for other markets outside of North America, including Europe.

How2Recycle aims to help brands put clear standardised consumer labels on their packaging, showing consumers how to recycle it.

The move to join How2Recycle is the latest in the LEGO Group’s multi-year push to improve recycling and sustainability. In 2012 the toy firm committed to using only paper from forests which have been managed under sustainable principles. In 2015, the company reached its goal to use Forest Stewardship Council-certified paper and packaging for all of its operations. The same year saw the group invest more than $150 million in developing sustainable materials for its products and packaging.

Last year it reported hiring at least 100 engineers for this purpose.

“LEGO bricks are made from the highest quality plastic, which is very functional and durable as a material. However, the current raw materials we use for manufacturing LEGO bricks are oil-based, and that is a scarce resource,” a LEGO spokesperson told Environmental leader in 2016.

“So we are searching for a new material that is not based on oil.”

The company committed to making all of its products and packaging from sustainable materials by 2030.

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