Going green is no longer just a trend. | Source: Mattel/Simplay3/MGA Entertainment/The Toy Insider

On April 22, families around the world will celebrate Earth Day, the annual call for action in the fight for environmental protection. It’s no secret that the toy industry has run into some environmental challenges over the years, particularly because it’s a business that’s been rooted in products and packaging made largely of paper and plastic — but things have changed

The “trend” toward green, eco-friendly, and sustainable toys is really no longer a trend, but a part of everyday business. Major toy and game makers have been joined by startups and rising stars in working together as an industry to make products that are better for the planet.

In just the past few months, Melissa & Doug revealed plans to plant 10 million trees as part of a “Thriving Forests” initiative; MGA Entertainment’s L.O.L. Surprise! debuted new packaging made from bamboo, wood, and sugar cane; Mattel put an eco-friendly spin on MEGA Bloks and Matchbox; Big Potato made strides in its “Green Tatos” initiative to make greener games; and companies including Funko, Hasbro, Headstart International, LEGO, Playmobil, PMI, Radio Flyer, ZURU, and others have launched new products, struck new partnerships, and made business changes for a better tomorrow.

From plastic-free packaging and sustainably-sourced wood to products made from bioplastics sourced from sugarcane in carbon-neutral factories, the supply chain is growing greener. And it’s not just how the toys are produced and packaged that’s changing. Many new toys and games are designed to teach kids to be mindful of their world and to start practicing green habits early.

To celebrate Earth Day 2022, we’ve rounded up some of our favorite new and upcoming products that play nicely with the environment. This is by no means an exhaustive list, but a starting point. Check them out below!

About the author

James Zahn

James Zahn

James Zahn, AKA The Rock Father, is editor-in-chief of The Toy Book, a senior editor at The Toy Insider and The Pop Insider, and editor of the Toy Report, the Toy Book‘s weekly industry newsletter. As a pop culture and toy industry expert, Zahn has appeared as a panelist and guest at events including Comic-Con International: San Diego (SDCC) Wizard World Chicago, and the ASTRA Marketplace & Academy. Zahn has more than 30 years of experience in the entertainment, retail, and publishing industries, and is frequently called upon to offer expert commentary for publications such as Forbes, Marketwatch, the Wall Street Journal, the New York Times, USA Today, Reuters, the Washington Post, and more. James has appeared on History Channel’s Modern Marvels, was interviewed by Larry King and Anderson Cooper, and has been seen on Yahoo! Finance, CNN, CNBC, FOX Business, NBC, ABC, CBS, WGN, The CW, and more. Zahn joined the Adventure Media & Events family in 2016, initially serving as a member of the Parent Advisory Board after penning articles for the Netflix Stream Team, Fandango Family, PBS KIDS, Sprout Parents (now Universal Kids), PopSugar, and Chicago Parent. He eventually joined the company full time as a senior editor and moved up the ranks to deputy editor and editor-in-chief.