“Making our toys out of renewable, recycled, or certified materials will result in about a 90% reduction of fossil fuel based plastic in Happy Meal toys, from a baseline of 2018. For perspective, that’s more or less the size of the entire population of Washington, DC, eliminating plastics from their lives for a year.” – McDonald’sKeep the Fun, Protect the Planet: Happy Meal Toys Go More Sustainable
In terms of units, McDonald’s is the world’s biggest toy manufacturer by a magnitude. Each Happy Meal version sells in the billions. That is why the company’s decision to move to corn-based plastics is so significant.
To this point, eco-plastics have been a nice idea but lacking in the look and feel of the petroleum-based product. McDonald’s is by moving to green plastics, essentially creating a new industry that will be big enough to develop plastics that are not just green but malleable and colorful.
Based upon McDonald’s sheer scale, they may be introducing a whole new era for the world’s farmers, toy companies, and families.