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Issue 04/2016

  • Text
  • Bioplastics
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  • Biobased
  • Plastics
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  • Biodegradable
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Toys Toys for a better

Toys Toys for a better future From its early beginnings at the end of 2009, Bioserie was created with a vision: to bring customers high quality, well designed durable consumer goods allowing them to enjoy the benefits of advanced green materials technology. Cutting-edge, beautiful products with a clean conscience. After years of research, during which the brand has fine tuned a unique mix of fully biobased materials based on PLA providing exceptionally good results in terms of heat resistance and durability, and successful releases of phone accessories products, the brand has embarked on a journey to bring young parents the future of toys since 2014. What best category to make a point than the start of it all! Becoming a mom and dad is often a turning point in priorities. Consumption criteria, amongst others, are affected. As parents strive to build the best for their babies, they naturally question what products are made of. The majority of them, close or above 80 % depending on the geography where they live, are ready to go for organic, green or ethical labels whenever they can afford it, e. g. in the food and/or hygiene department. When it comes to durable goods, there is indeed a growing awareness about the dangers of certain plastic, and a similar readiness to go for more sustainable products. Baby toys shelves are crowded with plastics. They look nice, with lots of fancy colors and shapes, yet one cannot but have read at least one article about the dangers of certain types of plastics. The usual suspects and most regulated are BPA, Phthalathes and Styrenes, known for their endocrine disruption or antiandrogenic effects. The problem is, it’s rather impossible to get the full scope of oil-based ingredients tested, and even if we could do so, the impact of exposure to this type of chemicals may not be immediate. That is, babies exposed to certain traditional plastics may not show any symptom for years, but the consequences of exposure to these petroleum-based chemicals may show up when they become teenagers or adults. And that’s how Kaya Kaplancali, co-founder and COO of Hong Kong based Bioserie explains the development of their toy range: “Oil based plastics can contain potentially hazardous chemicals for human health, as suggested by numerous respectable studies published within the last two decades. Our Bioplastic products contain none of those hazardous petrochemicals. We hope to accelerate the recognition and adoption of bioplastic products by addressing the needs of consumers who are sensitive about the safety and toxicity of the products they buy for their children. In other words, inherent safety of bioplastics help us shine so it’s easier to tell our story to consumers who are not familiar with this new and innovative industry.” Stephanie Triau, co-founder and CEO of Bioserie added: “As a parent, it’s very hard to know for sure that a product won’t have any negative health effects on your baby. The information on toy packages is either inadequate, too technical for a normal person to understand or at times misleading. This problem is eliminated with Bioserie’s use of plant-based materials that are naturally free of any harmful substances associated with oil-based plastics.” Bioserie provides young parents with one of the safest alternatives for their little ones. Their products are actually the first ever baby toys to obtain a 100 % biobased certification from the USDA, which means they have been tested to contain no fossil carbon (ASTM 6866). That’s a guarantee for them that their babies won’t lick, bite or chew anything derived from petroleum. What’s more, Bioserie’s baby toys are smartly made. Bioserie’s founders are young parents and have had their 28 bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/16] Vol. 11

Toys own experience of what makes the success of a toy in the house. Basically, a toy that works is one that both the baby and the parents will pick from the shelf happily, and that won’t just sit there. They found out three elements were key: color, versatility (the toy should be used in many ways and facilitate concept explorations) and convenience (the toy should ideally be easy to carry along, and should be washable in case it gets dirty). Bioserie’s product range is catered to 0 to 2 years old. It aims at bringing down-to-earth play essentials to support young babies in their early discoveries and be their companions into toddlerhood. Designed with the support of infant development specialists, they are also super-easy to clean, even in a dishwasher at specified temperatures when necessary (a great feature for the home, and that also means the toys are easy to share with others – in pre-school/nurseries environments or within the family and friends circle). Currently, five products are available. • Star teether – a simple star-shaped teether that’s easy to grasp, with dimples to soothe sore gums, available in green and orange; • Dumbbell Rattle – already a best seller, this dumbbell shaped rattle is extremely well balanced and allows babies to experiment with sounds and develop their understanding of cause and effect as some rattling balls play hide and seek in the handle; • Round Rattle – easy to pass from hand to hand, it’s another way to play with sounds and it’s easy to hang to anything around; • Shape sorting and stacking cube – a new variation on the shape sorting concept that also allows to understand the concept of size as the pieces can go in or onto the cube that serves as a base. • 2-in-1 Stacker – a toy with eight pieces and many ways of mounting, no right or wrong, a base that can wobble and stay stable, wins the attention of small and bigger kids around; These products have recently won a prestigious consumer award in the Netherlands, the newly created Green Awards of the Baby Innovation awards. Last but not least, these baby toys are kind to the environment. Because they’re made from annually renewable materials, they do not deplete the planet from anything that can’t grow again. While oil-based plastic toys rely on increasingly scarce resources and in the process of being manufactured may cause between 2 – 7 times their own weight in greenhouse gases to be emitted into our atmosphere, Bioserie toys are made from plants and they contribute considerably less greenhouse gases during their whole production chain. The brand’s founders feel upbeat about their line’s potential as they’ve signed distribution agreements in many countries accross the world (France, UK, the Netherlands, Germany, Austria, Scandinavia, Hungary, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Spain, Portugal, Korea, Hong Kong, Australia, USA, Canada, Caribbean). Being asked where they’d like to see the brand in five years, Kaya said: “We would like Bioserie to have a firm foothold on baby products market, worldwide. We would like to become a well-recognised durable consumer products brand and our sights are set on diversifying into other durable consumer product categories in the future. It is particularly exciting to make a point that it is possible to develop and run a business that truly respects our planet and the health of its inhabitants.” Sounds like toys are only the beginning! MT www.bioserie.com Drive Innovation Become a Member Join university researchers and industry members to push the boundaries of renewable resources and establish new processes and products. www.cb2.iastate.edu See us at K 2016 October 19-26, 2016 Düsseldorf, Germany Hall 5, Booth C07-1 bioplastics MAGAZINE [04/16] Vol. 11 29

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