Updated: Jul 15, 2021
How does a global company, famous for its plastic products, support sustainability?
At our last monthly e-club Bavaria meeting, we were happy to welcome Dr. Franziska Prockl, Play Director at the LEGO Group, a global and well-known company. In her role, she has expedited the development of the LEGO Group’s Sustainability Strategy that spans across three main pillars – Children – Environment – People. She shared how the LEGO Group thinks about sustainability and gave some examples of how the sustainability strategy is making an impact on children, the planet and towards a responsible workplace for LEGO's employees and suppliers. Besides Franziska, we were also joined by members of other e-clubs around the world, such as the e-club Italy 1, e-club Finland 1 and the recently founded e-club of Sweden.
During her talk, Franziska shared how LEGO is trying to create chains of responsible consumption and production in order to promote a business where products never become waste - with the great aim of becoming climate positive. For example, the plastic used for their standard bricks is very durable and does not end in landfill.
The three pillars of their sustainability strategy also include inclusive play for children, for example braille bricks. Donations by the LEGO Group support children impacted by current crises, such as the COVID-19 pandemic, natural disasters or racism-based violence. Environmentally, LEGO tries to think sustainable in all stages of production to consumption, besides balanced renewable energy production, they also trial paper packaging, as one of the most harmful products to out environment are the single-use plastic bags, in which most of the bricks are packaged.
Today, some LEGO elements manage without plastic at all and are made out of sustainable sugar cane.
In Canada and the US are the leftover LEGO bricks cleaned and sorted and donated to children in need. In Europe, this is still a legislation issue, unfortunately.
When it comes to the people, the LEGO Group has an active partnership with UN Women: they assess initiatives to enable gender-equality in offices, which are in many countries that the LEGO group has employees in, is not a given by the national policies. During the global pandemic the demand for LEGO products has increased and this put more pressure on the production lines, their suppliers and negatively affected the wellbeing of employees. LEGO is working on solutions in collaboration with their employees and Franziska mentioned that transparency and a shared code of business contact are essential to the open communication between different players in the production chain.
Thank you all for your valid questions during our Q&A with Franziska! Our e-club is highly interested to maintain and improve the communication between ZONTA e-clubs and managed to engage with other clubs in fruitful conversations and discussions in the last years. Franziska's presentation was part of our current motto "sustainability and digitalisation", during which we invite female guest speakers who are leading or experienced in these fields and listen to their projects and knowledge.
Do you want to have access to Franziska's presentation? Please write to firstname.lastname@example.org to receive access and download the video.