The Sustainability Success of Lego

Lego LogoThe Danish toy production company, The Lego Group, is one the most reputable companies in the world. The company strives to enliven kid’s play time while also being a conscientious member of planet Earth.  Each year Lego puts out a Responsibility Report breaking down how the company has done in relation to its societal and environmental goals.

The 2018 version of the report can be found here: 2018 Lego Responsibility Report

One major mission for the company is to make all Lego bricks, the little plastic ones, from sustainable materials by 2030. In 2018, Lego started to use green polyethylene, a plant-based plastic made from sugar cane, to produce more than 80 different LEGO elements. The plant-based elements still meet Lego’s same high quality standards as their non-sustainable plastic counterparts.

To ensure sustainability throughout their supply chain, Lego only sources sugar cane certified by the Bonsucro Chain of Custody standard for responsible sourcing.

Lego benefits from the cost saving aspects of a sustainable business model. It also benefits from the brand awareness environmentally conscious parents factor into their purchasing decisions.

“We are already proud of Lego and its reputation as a durable toy that can be built and rebuilt time and again,” said Tim Brooks, vice president of environmental sustainability. “Now we want to see what we can do about sustainability. We’ve been on this journey for a while.”

“Millennial parents are more aware than previous generations of their impact on the environment,” said Jackie Breyer, editorial director of The Toy Book and The Toy Insider. “They feel the need to teach by example that they can make the world a better place. They are willing to pay more for sustainable quality toys than for cheaper toys that end up in a land fill.”

Retail analysts say sustainability-minded shoppers are a force to be reckoned with. According to data tracking firm Nielsen, environmentally conscious shoppers have grown sustainable product sales by nearly 20 percent since 2014. By 2021, consumers are expected to spend $150 billion on sustainable goods.

– Link to NBC News Report

Instead of viewing the pressure from consumers to be more environmentally focussed as just an additional business cost, Lego has approached it as an opportunity to strengthen bonds with the parents and kids Lego’s products intend to serve.