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Mattel Releases First ‘Zero Emissions’ Matchbox Car With Tesla

Mattel Inc. this week announced its Drive Toward a Better Future program, unveiling the Matchbox Tesla Roadster, its first die-cast vehicle made from 99% recycled materials and certified CarbonNeutral. The Matchbox Tesla Roadster will be available starting in 2022.

The release is Mattel’s first step on a product roadmap intended to make all Matchbox die-cast cars, playsets and packaging with 100% recycled, recyclable or bio-based plastic by 2030. The roadmap is in line with Mattel’s goal to achieve 100% recycled, recyclable or bio-based plastic materials across all its products and packaging by 2030.

This first vehicle in the new, sustainable Matchbox line is also partnered with Natural Capital Partners. The Matchbox Tesla Roadsters have been certified CarbonNeutral by Natural Capital Partners, and the carbon offset credits are going towards a fund preserving grasslands in Colorado and Montana.

Mattel says the reimagined broader Matchbox brand includes new product lines and packaging that feature:

  • More environmentally friendly and innovative materials across vehicles, playsets and packaging
  • Enhanced consumer recycling through product design and packaging labeling
  • An overall eco-friendly themed approach to play, with more e-vehicle product offerings and e-vehicle chargers in fuel station playsets

“Since the inception of the modern-day die-cast car nearly 70 years ago, Matchbox has been using design and innovation to connect kids with the real world around them through play,” said Roberto Stanichi, Global Head of Vehicles at Mattel. “Matchbox is committing to using 100% recycled, recyclable or bio-based plastic materials to do our part in addressing the environmental issues we face today, and empower the next generation of Matchbox fans to help steer us towards a sustainable future.”

Stanichi says consumers will see the Matchbox commitment realized through products with zero-plastic packaging, using Forest Stewardship Council (FSC)-certified content in the paper and wood fiber materials. These new products are going on to toy store shelves now, and the first die-cast vehicle to have zero-plastic packaging includes the popular Matchbox Power Grabs assortment featuring a variety of licensed and original 1:64 scale Matchbox die-cast vehicles. An  EV-themed five-pack is now available with a paper foam inner tray.

In addition to introducing zero-plastic packaging, Matchbox is promoting recycling and waste recovery that actually works. A major criticism of plastic packaging is that recycling programs for the material have often failed, resulting in no real reduction in the waste stream.

Mattel says the new Matchbook packaging and products are designed for recyclability with recyclable parts, and the electronics in playsets are consolidated into a single, easily removable module to help make the local e-waste recycling process easier.

How2Recycle labeling guides consumers on the proper disposal of packaging materials. Matchbox is also exploring ways to reduce energy use, carbon emissions and waste in operations, while delivering the same standard of excellence across Matchbox products.

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