Lego vows to spend £310m to transform its bricks using sustainable materials

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Toy giants Lego are to invest £310 million to make its trademark colourful bricks using sustainable materials instead of its traditional oil-based plastic.

The Danish company will spend big over the next three years after coming under pressure from customers.

They say it has made the decision after receiving letters from children, who were worried about the environmental impact.

Lego will also ditch plastic bags in its boxed sets in favour of paper ones, they insist.

They say the new bags will be 100 per cent recyclable – and they will be a lot easier for young children to open.

The investment will help Lego to reach its target of becoming carbon neutral by 2022.

Since 2015, a team of more than 150 engineers and scientists have been testing a high number of plant-based and recycled materials.

That £116m investment, though, wasn’t without it’s problems.

Ensuring the bricks can stick together while coming apart easily has been difficult, but now the extra money has been made available.

“We have been exploring alternatives for some time and the passion and ideas from children inspired us to begin to make the change” chief executive Niels Christiansen said.

The company is now testing how to use bio-polyethylene for the hard bricks.

Tim Brooks, Lego’s vice-president of environmental responsibility, gave customers an insight into the operation.

“The difficulty is getting to where the bricks have the same colour, the same shine, the same sound,” he explained.

“The bricks need to be made with the precision of a hair’s width.

“Some of them we had to take apart with pliers and wrenches,” he added.

Lego stopped short of confirmed when it expects to have oil-free standard bricks on the market.

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