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  1. #1
    Expert Forum User The Ultimate London Mom!
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    Default Toys R Us going Green

    Toys “R” Us introduces “eco-friendly” toys

    In April, Toys “R” Us launched a new line of playthings that the company is calling “eco-friendly.” The collection made its debut with Natural Wooden Toys, Organic Cotton Dolls, and Natural Cotton Plush Animals and is set to expand later this year. A closer look at the “eco” claims shows that some carry more weight than others.


    Natural Wooden Toys. Each of the eight wooden toys in the new collection has been certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), a nonprofit organization that sets standards for forest management. FSC certification means that the wood was grown according to the group’s 57 environmental, social, and economic criteria, and that a third-party certifier verified those criteria were met. According to Toys “R” Us, 100 percent of the wood in the toys is FSC-certified and can be traced back to its source.

    Consumers Union considers the FSC label to be somewhat meaningful. The certification lacks specific criteria in some areas and has conflicts of interest because the voting authority of the FSC is not completely independent from financial interests in FSC-certified products. There are also concerns about the ability of the FSC to enforce the trademark. See our Eco-labels center for more information about the Forest Stewardship Council and other wood product certification.

    Organic Cotton Dolls. These dolls carry a “made with 100 percent organic” label. According to Toys “R” Us, the manufacturer of the dolls, based in Egypt, has obtained third-party certification and assurances from the cotton grower that the cotton used for the dolls is “unprocessed, unbleached, untreated, and grown using environmentally friendly methods.” However, the company did not disclose the name of the certifier or confirm that the cotton meets the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s organic standards, which USDA regulations require.

    Without more information, the claim cannot be properly evaluated, and consumers can’t be assured of its meaning.

    Also note that when a fabric does meet USDA organic standards, that refers only to how the fiber was grown, not to the processes by which it was made into fabric. See our Eco-labels center for more details on the USDA Organic label.

    Natural Cotton Plush Animals. Unlike the dolls, these plush animals make no organic claims. While the term “natural” implies that they are made from materials innate to the environment and that nothing artificial or synthetic has been added, there is currently no standard definition for the term, except as it applies to meat and poultry products. Nor is there an independent organization to verify such “natural” claims. See our Eco-labels center for more about natural claims.

  2. #2
    Expert Forum User The Ultimate London Mom!
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    All good I guess. Latley I am getting depressed with the big green consumer push. Companies are working so hard to have us consume 'green' and although I appreciate the shift towards more eco-friendly products, what about just consuming less? Environmentally that is really where we need to go.
    Mom of 2 girls, unschooler, feminist, runner and just general lover of life.

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  3. #3


    Good point doulamom, I'm reducing the stock of toys we have here, we have too many and I want less plastic around but as our toys go to others I'm not replacing them with an equal amount of wooden toys. A room full of toys to me is nothing more than clutter, "green" or not so.
    After all, the first "R" IS reduce!

  4. #4
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    Well said Girlsmum!
    The ToysRUs claims do seem a bit ambiguous though. I'm not sure I would be purchasing these items.

  5. #5
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    Agreed Especially considering many things aren't as 'green' as they suggest!

    It is so hard with toys - they seem to multiply! We literally haven't bought one stuffed animal (only one plush puppet) for our little one and we have so many stuff animals/toys that I don't know what to do!

    I would love to go for the approach of very few, but very good quality multi-purpose toys. Like the idea of some of the Waldorf stuff like their play stands!

  6. #6
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    I agree with you 100% doulamom and girlsmum and others.

    We can't actually produce real change unless we change our framework. Consumption is consumption is consumption, bottom line. Yes, buying "green" may have less overall impact, but overall, we need to break out of this hyperconsumption mode.
    The poster formerly known as Geomamma

  7. #7


    Agreed Especially considering many things aren't as 'green' as they suggest!

    This part I like................left bend in the road, I call Petsmart as I want to purchase a vegan organic hemp collar and leash, trying to get them IN Canada. The manager tells me on the phone that they have these wonderful new "green" dog collars and leashes that just came in, lovely shades of browns, greens, oranges and yellows. K!!.........what's the brand name, "Earth (something)", K!!..........material??, NYLON!?!?..............AND..............., missed the point of "green" entirely.

    Back to toys though?...........if I'm going to buy authentic organic toys that I trust for my girls, I'm booking a Saturday and DH and I are going to drive to St.Jacob's so I can buy the types of toys that the Mennonite children play with, I've met many young Mennonite ladies, all sweethearts and polite to no end, and I'm very sure they don't have stock of every Little Tykes or Fisher Price toy. These are fine in moderation but I'm reducing as my first priority and recycling to someone who can use them and replacing with au naturel when I happen across something that intrigues me.

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