Bioplastic Toys for Bringing Up Baby Right and Just Maybe Less Obese

Yet again classic designs go green. This time in the form of bioplastic toys for the kiddies, brought to you by Green Toys. And just in time for fellow TreeHugger Kenny who's son Robert was born the other day. Due to be a father myself later this month, I'm looking forward to sharing with my kids (it's twins!) the same good old toys, less the discernible odor of chemical toxicity, that I played with as a child: the fancifully-colored beach pail, the deluxe tea set with service for four (I had an older sister).

Green Toys is using plastics made by processing "biotic" (organic) material, in other words those found in nature, as opposed to most plastic products, whose primary raw ingredient is the bad-for-many-reasons petroleum. Bioplastics company Cereplast is supplying the plastics to Green Toys. It will also provide NatureWorks plastic, which is made from poly lactic acid (PLA), another corn-based product. Essentially the both plastics are manufactured from bioplastic resin made from annually renewable resources like corn and other starches. Since it took 77 million years for the earth to produce the fossil fuels that are used in the manufacturing of traditional plastic products, these bioplastics are truly renewable since corn can be planted and harvested in less than a year's time. Once all the farm equipment runs on solar-powered batteries, then we'll really be good to go. Additionally, using these materials also ensures that the toys are PVC and phthalate free. Not withstanding the passage of the disappointing Farm Bill, the more that government-subsidized corn is used to make the things our children play with, perhaps the less high-fructose corn syrup will find its way into the foods they eat. Although we're not so keen on the less-than-sensible diverting of food crops for non-nutritional uses such as for substitute fuels like ethanol, (we're gunning for switch grass) we'll take the added bump that these new children's toys could have on the problem of childhood obesity in America. Here's looking at you, kids.

Tags: Corn | Ethanol | Toys