What is a “recyclable” toy?
An increasing number of toy brands start offering a more diversified and environmentally friendly supply. “Ecological toy”, “recycled toy”, “eco-friendly toy”, “recyclable toy”… But how to choose wisely as a parent?
Therefore, we have decided to help you understand one of these denominations: the “recyclable toy”. What does it mean? How can you be sure to buy a recyclable product?
The choice of raw materials in the first place
A recyclable toy is a product in which at least one part – or all – of the raw materials can be re-introduced in the production-cycle. The choice of raw materials is therefore the first element to take into account to know if a product can be recycled.
Plastic toys are for their vast majority non-recyclable since they are usually made out of a superposition of plastic that cannot yet be separated in the recycling process. Do not throw them away in your recycling bin with your water bottles!
Cardboard toys (board games, conditioning boxes), paper toys (books) and wooden toys are usually recyclable. Our cardboard elements for instance are 100% recyclable and without any chemical addition. This material respects your children’s health and the environment simultaneously.
Limiting waste from the conception process
Beyond the choice of raw materials, the whole design process should be consistent. A brand that sells a recyclable product but does not worry about over-packaging is off-track.
Limiting the volume of waste during all the life cycle of the toy is also a major challenge (check our article on Zero waste here). To face this issue, the implication of designers from the start of the toy’s conception is essential. At Fabulabox, we created an ultra compact size packaging. Weigh up our product in a shop, you will be surprised by its load/size ratio! They do not contain any fitment and spacer elements. Nothing to throw away, but also fewer trucks for transportation.
In the toys market, high price is wrongly associated with the size of packaging, and some brands use that to sell voluminous packagings for small end products.
Beyond the packaging, we actively work on reducing the production wastes from the
production design to the quality controls. Our production being mostly handmade, we manually pick up correctable flaws. It helps us reduce waste while remaining rigorous on the quality of our products.
How to recognize sustainable product during purchase?
No official standard on recyclable toy exist in France. Logos on packagings do not guarantee the recyclability of the product, and can be misleading for the consumer.
In the end, you should not only rely on logos to know if your product is recyclable or not. Consult product label instead and ask the toy manufacturer’s advice, because they may have a recycling branch.
Buying recyclable products is a good thing and we encourage you to ask questions to sellers and manufacturers.
But keep in mind that re-using, giving a second life or keeping the products longer is even more effective when it comes to limiting waste.