Flying Tiger Copenhagen switching toy production to wood

Flying Tiger Copenhagen, one of Denmark’s largest toy retailers, has set an ambitious target to reduce its use of plastic by 50% by 2025.

The variety-store chain, which has grown rapidly across Europe by offering cheap toys, gadgets, and household items made of plastic, is now looking to move towards natural materials such as wood, metal, glass, and ceramic. The company’s CEO, Martin Jermiin, has emphasized that sustainability should not be an excuse to price higher and that the company’s low-price appeal would remain intact even after the shift away from plastic.

While reducing the use of plastic and plastic-related waste and emissions has become an environmental goal for many companies, including Lego, it is hard for companies such as Flying Tiger to phase out plastic quickly. The company is heavily dependent on synthetic material, as illustrated by the plastic skeletons, spiders, and other ghoulish trinkets in one of its product development studios. The Halloween holiday, which is a big earner for the company, remains heavily dependent on plastic from a product standpoint.

Flying Tiger’s solution is to ditch plastic where possible and use recycled plastic instead of virgin material where it can’t, such as with moulded ghosts and skeletons. Products such as jewellery and ornaments can be made from metal, glass, or ceramic instead of plastic. The company has also raised some prices but has mainly focused on controlling costs at the design phase, as materials of all kinds grow more expensive. For instance, the rising cost of ceramics has led to updated versions of products that are slightly smaller but priced the same.

Replacing plastic with wood can be done affordably, according to the company. A wooden toy banjo priced at 12 euros has recently replaced a plastic version that cost €15. A wooden toy truck priced at €2.50 is 50 cents cheaper than its plastic predecessor. For now, the new wooden version of four-in-a-row costs €5—double the price of the plastic set. Still, if it proves popular with Christmas shoppers, a wooden set ordered in high volume would become significantly cheaper per unit. The shift away from plastic is a big positive for some consumers and, so long as prices remain stable, it doesn’t seem to deter others who are less environmentally minded.

Flying Tiger Copenhagen switching toy production to wood

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