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Barbie's dirty secret: rainforest destruction

Think what you will about Greenpeace and their often aggressive brand of activism… they do know how to create clever, eye-catching campaigns around important environmental issues. Rainforest destruction is a big one for them (as well as most of us), and after tracing the pulp source of packaging for toys from brands like Mattel, Hasbro, Lego, and Disney back to Indonesian rainforests, they did what any responsible organization would: they broke the news to Barbie’s longtime companion Ken. You can see the fallout in the video above…

In all seriousness, though, the sourcing of pulp from Indonesia creates a direct threat to biodiversity there… including wildlife such as tigers, orangutans, and elephants. And while Greenpeace is having fun with one of Mattel’s signature product lines (to which they’ve tried to add a green sheen), they’ve also created a compelling campaign, replete with results of their investigations, around the issue of deforestation in Asia. Take a look at the video below for a taste of what they’ve found.

Of course, they’re also asking visitors to take action, and write to Mattel’s CEO about the information they’ve gathered… but it turns out you don’t need to… after writing this post initially, I found out that Mattel quickly bowed to the pressure, and “directed [their] packaging suppliers to stop sourcing pulp from [Asia Pulp and Paper, the other target of the campaign] as we investigate the allegations.” Score one for Greenpeace (and thanks to the Ecolibris blog for the heads up)!

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