Woolworths Has Axed Ooshies, But How Green Are Its New Toys?

Ooshies: In 10,000 years’ time, alien archaeologists will find layers upon layers of them embedded in the Australian landscape. Yup, these little plastic rubbery figures were rubbish for the environment. Because of this fact, environmentally conscious folks went to change.org to demand that these products cease being released. As one person wrote in 2020, “We are urging Woolworths to stop producing and releasing unsustainable products as giveaway incentives… No more single-use plastics, no more ooshies.”

In 2022, no Ooshies have been released. If this is due to the outcry of public pressure or not, Woolworths hasn’t said. Instead, this conglomerate will be dropping a line of doodads called Fix-ems. According to a statement Woolworths provided The Latch, Fix-ems are little woven patches of Disney characters that can be stuck onto surfaces like plastic, glass, and your partner’s work computer. Additionally, these items can be permanently ironed onto some fabrics, such as denim or cotton. This means, as an adult, I can finally make a t-shirt where Lightning McQueen is crashing into the Gucci logo.

Related: What Woolworths Low Price Freeze Means For You

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Now, Woolworths is making a big deal about how environmentally friendly these products are. As per this joint’s website, “Woolworths has established a partnership with Save Our Soles to turn any pre-loved Fix‑ems™ into recycled products. The recycled elements will be used to produce anti-fatigue mats and padding for playground equipment.” They then went on to state that any unwanted Fix-ems can be brought back to Woolworths by November 1, and they’ll get recycled. 

However, while this initiative is admirable, Woolworths might have forgotten two important factors. The first being, children can be small fools. Kids are going to try sticking these stickers to trees, not realise that they’ve fallen off their backpacks, and just chuck them in any old bin. Plus, the second important factor is that most parents are exhausted. After a 40-hour work week and helping a child with their homework, do you really think that these folks will drive to Woolworths to get these stickers recycled? A lot of Fix-ems are just going to end up in landfills.

On the other hand, it’s worth noting these items are made from at least 80% recycled materials and are certified by Good Environmental Choice Australia as environmentally preferable. So that’s at least better than nothing. It’s therefore up you to judge whether or not it’s worth supporting two massive corporations in this marketing endeavour. As the old saying goes, “There are two wolves inside each of us. One of them wants to be a self-sustainable environmental guru. The other just wants a Mike Wazowski sticker.”

Want to learn more about Woolworths or how to actually live sustainably? Then here’s some rad articles on The Latch

How to Be More Sustainable: 20 Tips for Being More Eco-Concious

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How Do We Know If a Brand Is Actually Sustainable?

What It Took to Stop Woolworths Opening a Dan Murphy’s In Darwin

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