LEGO moves the goalposts for its new paper bags

The LEGO Group has delayed the roll-out of its new paper bags from early 2022 to later this year, suggesting the transition away from plastic packaging is taking longer than expected.

Part of the company’s wider initiative to make all its packaging sustainable by 2025, the paper bags were originally announced all the way back in 2020. Prototypes appeared on eBay shortly after, but that was essentially the last we heard of them until September 2021, when the LEGO Group confirmed that its trial had been successful – and that we’d start to see the bags phased in from early 2022.

So far, however, the paper bags have only turned up in one set: last year’s employee gift, the NINJAGO-themed 4002021 The Temple of Celebrations. Every other box we’ve opened this year has included the same old plastic bags for its LEGO elements, suggesting the roll-out of the replacement packaging may have been delayed.

LEGO paper bags featured 1

The LEGO Group has now confirmed in its 2021 annual report that the phasing in of its paper bags will actually begin from ‘mid-2022’, which the company says will still put it on track to meet its 2025 target. It means we’ve got a little longer to wait to see the paper bags in person, but they could arrive in boxes as soon as June.

The first set confirmed to arrive this summer is 75325 The Mandalorian’s N-1 Starfighter, which is already making waves for being the first LEGO Star Wars set to include a printed head for Din Djarin. But it could also be among the first wide-release sets to feature paper bags, based on the new timeline of the sustainability initiative.

“We have received many letters from children about the environment asking us to remove single-use plastic packaging,” the LEGO Group’s CEO Niels B. Christiansen said in 2020. “We have been exploring alternatives for some time and the passion and ideas from children inspired us to begin to make the change.”

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Chris Wharfe

I like to think of myself as a journalist first, LEGO fan second, but we all know that’s not really the case. Journalism does run through my veins, though, like some kind of weird literary blood – the sort that will no doubt one day lead to a stress-induced heart malfunction. It’s like smoking, only worse. Thankfully, I get to write about LEGO until then. You can follow me on Twitter at @brfa_chris.

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