JUNKO, the eco-conscious arts and crafts range that can turn waste into toys, has experienced a week of sell-out sales across Amazon and a surge in online orders across its own website; a direct impact, the company states, of its prime time appearance on ITV’s How to Spend it Well at Christmas, last week.
The toy range was the focus of a showcase spot with Dr Gummer’s Good Play Guide’s Rob Taylor-Neustadt and presenter Philip Schofield, who, when handed the JUNKO Zoomer Kit and told of its concept of turning household waste and packaging into toys themselves, billed the range as a “clever idea.”
The result, according to Peter Rope, founder and creator of JUNKO, was that the company witnessed sales “go through the roof,” in the subsequent days. The company has confirmed that three weeks’ worth of stock was sold in three days.
The TV showcase coincides with a what has been called a bumper year for STEM and STEAM toys. The sector has picked up increased traction of the past 10 months, driven by parents looking to home school their children who have been kept at home by school closures across the UK earlier in the year.
The demand for STEM and educational toys has continued into the fourth quarter of the year, and is tipped to carry on ‘well on in to 2021,’ the educational toy specialist, Thames & Kosmos, told ToyNews last week.
As a result, Rope has told us that JUNKO is now ‘well positioned to grow,’ into the new year. The JUNKO range combines creativity, craft, and simple engineering and science, ticking the boxes for current consumer trends among the toy space, through ‘really flexible designs that encourage repeat, prolonged play.’
Rope told ToyNews: “We were delighted to be on the show – even though were only on screen for half a minute, the impact was huge. Rob explained the JUNKO proposition really well to Phillip who seemed genuinely surprised and impressed. I think it must have been Phillip’s reaction which caused all the attention.
“Our website came to a standstill and we sold out on Amazon over the next day – I’ve never seen anything like it.
“It was great to see mainstream media calling out novelty plastic toys which have limited play potential; a good signifier for changes in behaviour that I’d like to see.”
JUNKO has since detailed further plans for the toy space as it now looks to tap into the stocking filler and gifting markets with the launch of its Stocking Filler Book titled, Epic Cereal Box Creations. The new title includes 30 Magic Corners (made from recycled plastic) and is priced at £14.99.
It features a number of ideas and over 20 creations for kids to construct from old cereal boxes, including dinosaurs, dolls’ furniture, crazy cars, a vampire bat, a space helmet, a house, seasonal decorations, paper darts, and a unicorn.
The new published title is the collective effort of the JUNKO family. Both Peter and Beth Rope as well as their three children have all had an active role in making the toys, colouring and producing the photography within it.
“We’re really excited about the book – it took us four months to make, it was a real labour of love. Throughout it, we encourage kids to ‘Go Wild’ and experiment for themselves as that’s what all of our kits are about.
“It is meant as a jumping off point for young creators. We hope it also provides a simple introduction to the JUNKO ethos and range at a price point suited to the Gifting market.”