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Toys - Plastic or traditional?

(8 Posts)
lillibet24 Mon 13-Jun-11 20:30:58

I was really interested to hear that the Environment Secretary was in consultation with toy manufacturers and retailers in the hope of reducing the amount of packaging used for their products. But what has struck me is that no-one seems to be questioning the evironmental impact of the actual toys. Almost all of the commercial toys available seem to be made of plastic which not being an expert in these matters, and I look forward to someone putting me straight - are not bio-degradable. Are we ignoring the situation because its easier not to think about it? I know pester power and the power of advertising has a huge impact on what our children want to play with but what happens to all this plastic when its no longer 'the in thing'? look around your childrens' bedrooms and work out how much plastic will be going into landfill.
And I hate to mention it but doesn't plastic come from the petrochemical industry? i.e. fossil fuels which seem to be becoming rather sort after and expensive? I think it is not only the packaging of our toys that needs addressing but our whole idea of what our children should be playing with. I am sure that there are more ecologically sound toys out there, it might just mean we have to look a bit harder. I wonder where my old wooden dolls house is?

shell40 Mon 13-Jun-11 22:30:17

I suppose this hasn't yet been addressed simply because toys are kept for longer periods of time and often passed on...not sure but I do see your point...definately given me something to think about-especially as the amount of this material used to make one toy would equal a substantial amount of packaging by comparison!!! Good luck in your quest

MumblingRagDoll Mon 13-Jun-11 22:52:02

I avoid plastic where possible. Wooden cooker, tin pans...they cost a lot more though and many people can't afford that.

thefirstMrsDeVere Mon 13-Jun-11 23:06:16

I see your point but what about the use of wood itself? Would that not have quite an impact?

From a professional point of view, although many wooden toys are lovely, they dont always have the play value I need for my work.

I work with children with disabilities. Wooden cookers and pans are great for some of my children but not for others. They need to big bright brash plastic ones.

The crappy brittle ones I can do without though.
I find the cheaper ones have more packaging too and are a lot harder to get out. Lots of screws and twisty ties hmm

MosEisley Mon 13-Jun-11 23:06:19

YANBU. The best way to reduce the volume of toy plastic going into landfill would be to buy less toys in the first place.

Toys seem to me to be very cheap nowadays, compared to when I was a child in the 80s. Perhaps this is part of the reason that so many are sold.

I think many people - not just parents but other family members and friends - try to make children happy by buying them toys.

In our house, this rarely works and most toys are hardly played with.

The plastic in the football, trampoline, colouring pens and the wii was worth the environmental cost. The rest we could have done without.

begonyabampot Mon 13-Jun-11 23:10:40

Parents seem to love the wooden ones while kids seem to prefer the bright, flashing, noisy plastic ones. The packaging is ridiculous though.

seeker Mon 13-Jun-11 23:11:50

Wooden toys in the livingroom as a design feature and to impress visitors. The plastic ones they actually enjoy playing with in their bedrooms - or also in the living room but concealed in a stylish rattan trunk.

Reduce the impact on the environment by buying second hand, free cycle and hand down. But this applies to absolutely everything, not just toys.

pigletmania Mon 13-Jun-11 23:11:51

Toys are kept longer, they are passed on or given to charity so that in itself is recycling, unless broken they are not generally thrown away. Wooden toys are nice but not for every children, my dd has social communication difficulties (awaiting a dx of some description) and speech and language delay, and therefore prefers the big brash loud and bright toys than the wooden ones. Especially if they are Peppa Pig or Dora the Explorer. I have several loud brash toys but boy do they have their educational value, I have a V Tech alphabet board which gives the phonetic sounds and dd aged 4 loves it and is learning at the same time, this would not happen with the wooden toys.

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