Not quite

Dear people of Apple Park,

I am your ideal customer. I don’t buy a lot of things, but when I do, I look for sustainability and quality. The price tag often goes unnoticed, because buying less I can afford more. Plus the health of my baby and Earth is worth every penny. I’ve been searching for a plush toy for my 14-month old boy that fits the bill.

There is so much crap out there and I have yet to find a good one. Some of the Waldorf stuff is nice, but a stiff ball of cotton and wool isn’t super cuddly. Plus I would like an animal, not a human.

Dilly Dally on Commercial Drive in Vancouver just got your Picnic Pal bunnies in. I noticed them right away. Could it be?!

Cute. Check.

Cuddly. Check.

Not packaged in plastic. Check.

Package printed with soy ink. Nice touch.

Organic cotton cover. Check.

Corn fiber filling. Now we’re talking!

But wait! Plastic pellets mixed in with the fibers!? I knew it was too good to be true.

My apologies, but your advertising is misleading. Eco-friendly, sustainable, and organic plastic is not. Nor is it “good for the whole Earth” to borrow your words.

First, I’m sure you know what plastic is made from. And furthermore, perhaps you know that plastic is a material that doesn’t biodegrade…ever. Those nurdles, as the pellets are called, escape from the manufacturing process in vast numbers and now pollute every beach imaginable. For thousands of years I might add. Just have a stroll and sift next time. Wouldn’t you feel bad if a baby turtle’s first food was a plastic pellet from your bunny?  Or having our children and their children, make pellet, instead of sand castles?  Sadly that is not that much of an over exaggeration.  What more?  In the ocean, those little nurdles act like magnets for pollutants. So much so that you can have a plastic pellet up to a million times the concentration of toxins- like DDT and PCBs- than the surrounding water. Give that to a fish that thinks it’s food, then put that fish on the plate of our young ones.

You are so close, but your money is still in my pocket. What is preventing you from going the distance? Would the bunny suffer without the pellets? Finding an alternative to those pellets would be awesome and would set a positive example for other toy companies. While you’re at it, can you find a cool alternative to the recycled plastic eyes too? If so, I’ll buy two.

I am posting this letter on my blog, Plastic Manners. My readers are also potentially your customers, with 44 dollars in their pockets. Having said this, you have some time; the average Jane customer may not notice the dirty little secret yet, but I assure you they will. With wooden and organic toys on the rise in popularity, there will not only be increasing competition out there soon, but an increasing number of careful label readers, as well as skeptics, of broad, yet empty, claims of sustainability.

You make a “Green Promise” on your website: “Safe for children, better for the environment, and always beautifully green.” Here is your chance to not only get ahead of the game, but deliver on that promise.

Thank you for your time, and we look forward to hearing your thoughts.

Sincerely, Taina Uitto

2 thoughts on “Not quite

  1. Hello Jocelynn,

    We did reply and have good reasons for using non-toxic, non-phthalate recycled plastic (very small amounts) that is in fact bio-degradable for our sonic-welded eyes and weighted pellets. Our decision was based on safety, especially from mold that often can come from seeds. Feel free to research “Recycled PLA pellets” and contact us with any questions.

    Apple Park

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