Everything You Need To Know About Eco Friendly Toys
Sustainable living is a growing trend in homes around the world, as families have become more eco-conscious and aware of their environmental impact. But where do you start? How do you know if a brand is truly eco friendly? Are plastic toys really that bad? Is silicone better? And what about wooden toys?
From recycling to greenwashing, we answer all of your burning questions in our guide to eco friendly toys. You can also take a peek at the brand new range from Green Toys!
Teaching Kids Why Eco Friendly Is Important
Teaching youngsters about nature and the environment gives them a greater understanding of the big wide world and how to look after it. As they say, children are our most precious resource, so it’s up to us to nurture their development and help them grow into caring adults who will do their bit to protect the planet.
There are lots of easily achievable ways we can do this, which we explore below, but first, let’s take a step back to find out what eco friendly actually means and how toys can be made sustainably.
Why is it called eco friendly?
Eco simply means ‘habitat’ or ‘environment’. It comes from the old Latin word ‘oeco’, but now it has evolved to the term ‘eco friendly’, which is defined as ‘causing little or no damage to the environment'.
What is an eco friendly product?
What makes a product eco friendly is the fact that it has been designed and produced with minimal environmental impact. It could have been manufactured using renewable energy, made out of sustainable materials, or it could be easy to recycle - reducing the amount of waste we send to landfill.
What are eco friendly toys made out of?
There are lots of materials that are kinder to the planet than plastic. Natural materials like bamboo, organic cotton, hemp or cork are excellent sustainable alternatives. Recycled materials are another great eco friendly option. California-based company Green Toys makes all of its products out of 100% recycled milk jugs!
Are wooden toys eco friendly?
Yes - particularly if the wood has been sustainably sourced. Wooden toys are more planet-friendly than plastic as they are biodegradable, can be recycled and tend to last longer, but wood that has been sustainably harvested is better still. FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) is a non-profit organisation that promotes ethical forestry, meaning that for every tree that’s cut down, a new one will be planted in its place or allowed to regenerate naturally.
Are silicone toys eco friendly?
Silicone is not the most sustainable material out there, but it is much more eco friendly than plastic. Silicone toys are non-toxic and free from nasty chemicals, they don’t break down to create microplastic particles which pollute the ocean, and they’re super strong and durable, so they have a much longer life span than plastic. Plus, all of our silicone beach toys and silicone baby toys are made from food-grade silicone, which means they’re chew-friendly for teething tots and far safer than plastic.
How do plastic toys affect the environment?
Made from fossil fuels and often ending up in landfill, plastic is one of the planet’s most persistent pollutants. Environmentalists have shared that plastic toys have had a big part to play in the rise of plastic waste, so it is best to shop for eco friendly alternatives wherever possible.
How do you know if a product is eco friendly?
Greenwashing is when companies mislead customers by falsely marketing their products as environmentally friendly. To avoid this trap, the key is in the detail. Look for brands that are specific about their sustainable credentials, like the ‘100% recycled plastic’ label you’ll find on Green Toys’ products, as opposed to brands that make broad, vague statements that don’t really say much.
Another helpful trick is to check a product's green certifications, like FSC for wooden toys or the Green Seal which validates products that have been made in a sustainable way.
What can kids do to go green?
There are loads of eco friendly actions you can take as a family to encourage your kids to go green. Here are 10 things you can do to get started.
New Green Toys Are Here
Green Toys has launched 7 new toys that’ll make fantastic eco friendly gifts for tiny eco-warriors! Take a look at the new collection...
Ice Cream Truck Set: A funky purple ice cream truck with a removable roof and two stackable ice cream cones with sauce toppings.
Dump Truck Wagon: Kids can use the pull-along cord to transport sand or soil stored in the working dumper, then safely unload the goods. Great for strengthening their fine motor skills.
Cupcake Truck: Budding bakers can deliver sugary goods (real or pretend) to family and friends with this cute cake-themed truck toy. It doesn’t get much sweeter than this!
Sea Life Bath Toy: Bring the ocean to the bathtub with our six-pack of sealife-themed bath toys, featuring a stingray scooper, squeezy shell and turtle and crab water spinners.
Tide Pool Deluxe Set: An upgrade on the Sea Life Set, with six extra underwater creatures, including a starfish, moon snail shell and more.
Loader Truck: This toy truck has chunky tyres to handle tough sandpit terrains and a bucket loader to scoop and carry all sorts of important building materials, from mud to pebbles!
All of these new Green Toys are made from 100% recycled plastic. They are coloured using food-safe, mineral-based colouring and packaged in recyclable boxes printed with soy inks.