US - After a much publicized lashing by environmental advocate Greenpeace, US-based toy titan Mattel has decided to switch to eco-friendly packaging for Barbie dolls and the rest of its toy products by the end of this year.
For a start, 70% of Mattel’s paper packaging will be derived from recycled materials or sustainable fiber by the end of 2011. And by 2015, the toy manufacturer intends to use environment friendly packaging materials for 85% of its packaging needs.
Mattel vice president Lisa Marie Bongiovanni said the company is committed to utilize sustainably sourced wood and paper fiber for its business, basically starting with packaging.
This decision ensued after Greenpeace activists pressured Mattel to stop sourcing its packaging materials from Asia Pulp and Paper (APP), which according to Greenpeace, is responsible for the destruction of the Indonesian rainforest.
Greenpeace stated that Mattel realized that it could not allow its products to be involved in any forms of environmental destruction such as deforestation, or worst, utilize packaging at the costs of the rainforests and tiger habitat.
Responding to Mattel’s latest announcement, Greenpeace said Mattel’s decision carries a strong message for other companies to emulate, that responsible businesses must be vigilant and must not espouse deforestation for its products.
However, before Mattel came up with the decision, Greenpeace went through so much trouble of making the US-based toy giant recognize its involvement in deforestation.
First, Greenpeace used Mattel’s power couple, Barbie and Ken, through Twitter. The organization made it look like Ken dumped Barbie for having played a part in deforestation. The group posted photos of Barbie with a chainsaw at hand cutting down trees.
It was Greenpeace’s way of telling the world that Barbie’s packaging was laced with rainforest destruction. To cut the drama, Mattel issued a global policy that it will keep rainforest destruction out of its supply chains by severing ties with APP.
As part of this new policy, Mattel has instructed suppliers to avoid utilizing wood fiber from controversial sources, including companies that have contentious background. The company also aims to priortise the use of recycled paper in their business as well as to increase the use of wood products that are certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC).