Not a fan of plastic toys?
If you have children around, you may find that plastic playthings are a little hard to completely steer clear of.
However, there are plastic options for toys that don’t make as much of an environmental dent.
Toys that are made from milk jugs are becoming a popular alternative to newly produced ones. Many companies are offering items that are constructed from 100% recycled plastic milk containers as a more eco friendly option to traditional substances used for toy making.
The plastic used to produce milk containers is called high-density polyethylene (or HDPE) and is considered safe for food use. Therefore, it is considered a better option than playthings made from unknown or questionable substances, like lead and other toxins.
To recycle the plastic milk jugs they are cleaned and processed into a pellet-like material. Making toys from recycled materials saves a lot of energy as well as resources, as it takes less to reprocess milk plastics into pellets, melt down and mold them, than it does to produce completely new toys. They are also fully recyclable at the end of their use.
Green Toys, Inc., has a running counter on their site of how many plastic milk jugs they have recycled so far, which is quite a number. This gives an idea of how recycling just one can make a difference.
Many toys that are made from plastics can be cheaply made, however quality ones made from milk plastics seem to be durable as well as color retaining. This is a bonus as it can be used for many years instead of quickly disposed of because it has broken. In order to add pigment to toys some manufacturers, like Green Toys, Inc. (product images below) use a technique to color the plastic that is approved by regulatory agencies as food safe dyes.
Although cutting down on plastic consumption will eventually lead to a decrease in plastic production, choosing to purchase items that are exclusively made from recycled plastics is one way to use up existing sources that are already circulating.
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