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Friday, October 22, 2010

Tick the all-important ‘green’ box with wooden toys

Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past ten years, words and phrases like ‘bio-degradable’, ‘eco-friendly’, and simply ‘green’, have come to be as common in everyday conversation as ‘hello’ and ‘goodbye’. The mighty alliance of the media and certain governments around the world have flexed their muscles, they have made clear their intent on creating an environmentally-conscious culture, and frankly, it seems to be working.

But for those who believe in the ‘green’ focus but can’t get the time off work to tie themselves to a tree in the New Forest, fear not, because there are changes you can make to your everyday life to take a step closer to being eco-friendly. While there are plenty of good reasons to invest in wooden toys (they prompt imagination, are durable, and are handcrafted, to name a few), one that is often skirted around is the environmental one.

Put very simply, wooden toys are biodegradable, and so they are much better for our environment than their plastic cousins. Plastic is sent to populate landfills, many of which are bursting at the seems already.

Plus, the durability of wooden toys means that they are not prone to breaking or damage, often in fact they are passed down through the generations of a family. And their often generic nature means that they do not come in and out with fashion and film, they simply exist in the same way that they have for hundreds of years, which for many families, is a comfort.

Though further, buying wooden toys that are uniquely handcrafted means buying into a significant tradition. The likes of wooden rocking horses, dolls, rattles and building blocks, are all puzzle pieces of toy history. These are the toys that have survived the test of time, and no amount of battery-powered tat will knock them from their perch. So, consider the green agenda, consider the history of the toy-making industry, and with your help, wooden toys will be entertaining children for the rest of this century, and the next ones after that.

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