The prototype of the designer's part is made of material obtained as a result of processing plastic bottles.
The world's most popular manufacturer of plastic construction kits is actively implementing various measures that make the production of products more environmentally friendly. So, in 2020, the company announced that it would begin removing single-use plastic from its boxes. And the next step on this path was the introduction of a prototype Lego part made entirely from recycled plastic.
The cube is made of thermoplastic PET (polyethylene terephthalate), obtained from used plastic bottles. During the production process, reinforcing additives are added to such plastic. From one plastic bottle with a volume of 1 liter, it turns out to make ten Lego parts standard size 2x4.
The Lego Group has a team of 150 people working to create a more environmentally friendly alternative to plastic parts. It took them about three years to create the presented prototype, because the details of the designer must not only visually correspond to the usual cubes, there are also a number of strict requirements for the quality and safety of the parts, the grip strength of the parts and the convenience of playing with them also play a very important role. This sample comes after hundreds of different uses of recycled plastic have been tested.
While the environmentally friendly plastic part is in the testing phase, this phase is expected to last about a year. And only then, if the Lego experts are satisfied with the test results, the recycled plastic parts will appear in the sets that will go on sale.
Since 2018, the company has been using bio-polyethylene, made from sustainable sugar cane, to create some parts. However, such material is used to create individual parts that are small and often not too hard, like trees or accessories for minifigures. But for the main part - the famous Lego brick - a more durable material is needed, which the brand is working on creating today.