Fisher-Price follows Barbie and Matchbox in Mattel PlayBack recycling program

Sustainability as a societal goal seems achievable, but it involves more than just knowing the principles. It is not enough for people, companies, organizations and brands to learn the basics, because the most important thing is that these principles are put into practice. A truly sustainable environment may still be a long way off, but little by little we can start to make a difference. Mattel, one of the world’s leading toy makers, has launched a special program to reduce waste by allowing consumers to return toys to the company after children have finished playing with them. The idea is simple: families just have to send their Mattel toys back to the manufacturer.

Designate: Mattel

Mattel aims to make its products 100% recycled or recyclable as an important goal. Another major goal is to use bio-based plastic materials in packaging and products by 2030. Mattel has already licensed some of its major sub-brands to be part of the program and accept old but usable toys. MEGA, Matchbox and Barbie are already playing their part in the toy take-back initiative.

Returning toys for recycling is not just the goal as there is also the plan to help extend the life of those toys. Mattel wants to recover and reuse materials extracted from old Matter toys for future and new products. In this way, waste is significantly reduced and avoids filling landfills.

Pamela Gill-Alabaster, SVP Global Head of Sustainability and Social Impact at Mattel, shared: “The Mattel PlayBack program has been enthusiastically received by consumers and has provided tremendous learning specific to the sustainability and disassembly of our products, which will contribute to the future design of products designed for the circular economy.” She also explained that the company has started discovering new technologies in plastic recycling and processing. The future of toy production may include using old materials collected through the PlayBack program, helping the planet manage waste and hopefully see a circular economy in the toy industry.

Mattel's PlayBack Program Returning Toys for Recycling

The Mattel PlayBack program is now open in the US, UK, France, Germany and Canada. It’s been a year since its launch, and more people can participate as Fisher-Price toys are now accepted. Specifically, these non-electronic Fisher-Price toys are included and those in the Imaginext, Little People, and Laugh & Learn series of products.

Principles of the Mattel PlayBack program

The move means Fisher-Price is joining the Barbie, Mega and Matchbox brands in this “green” effort. The main objective of the Mattel PlayBack program is to reuse materials in new forms. Old toys will be transformed into new, so there won’t be any sad Toy Story moments to behold.

If you have a bunch of Mattel Fisher-Price toys and the kids have already stopped playing with them, be sure to join the Mattel PlayBack program. You will receive a free printable shipping label to affix to the box you return to Mattel. The toymaker will then check the condition of the toys, sort them and separate them by type of material. Not all materials can be used or reused, but the company will always use them to convert them into energy or recycle them into other plastic products. Mattel is committed to recycling and handling them responsibly, which will greatly help Mother Earth.

Mattel PlayBack Program Return Matchbox Toys

Mattel has already established ESG (environmental, social and governance) strategies, and this PlayBack program is just one of many efforts. It will only continue to work on its circular design and product stewardship principles, and perhaps expand the PlayBack program further. A truly sustainable future is a big goal not only for Mattel but also for other major manufacturers who primarily produce plastic products, so we hope more companies will follow suit.

Mattel Play Program Play Recycle Repeat

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