Crayons+Earth

biodegradable crayons

Traditional crayons give off one of the most recognizable smells in the world. What you may not know is that unique smell is created by a stiffening agent called stearic acid, a derivative of beef tallow—more commonly known as beef fat. Yes, your tried-and-true crayons are mooing at you. The primary ingredient in traditional crayons is paraffin wax. That innocent-seeming ingredient has been the go-to solution for well over a hundred years. That was fine for your grandpappy, but crayons need to get with the times. Paraffin wax is derived from non-renewable crude oil and is not biodegradable.

Given that we live in a world with finite resources, we owe it to our children and our children’s children to invent solutions to environmental issues big and small. The humble crayon doesn’t top the list as the largest environmental offender, but nevertheless it is causing lasting harm. It is estimated that the world’s leading crayon manufacture consumes more than 20 million pounds of paraffin wax per year. How much of that ends up in landfills every year once the used and broken crayons are discarded?

The following simple thought was the catalyst for Effekt to activate and to dive headfirst into the crayon business: If children are educated about the environment early on then they’ll be far more likely to take better care of the world they inherit. We’ve been working on improved crayon formulations for about two years now. The process has been slow and methodical as it was critical that the improved crayons not only push the environmental aspects to the limit, but that they perform every bit as well as the traditional variety. We made a breakthrough about three months ago when the formulation was perfected.

Our improved crayons perform indistinguishably from traditional crayons, though the materials used to make them are anything but traditional. The yet-to-be-named improved crayons are 100% biodegradable, 100% compostable, 100% renewable, GMO-free, vegan, and hypoallergenic. One optional product attribute that our company patented was to embed micro-seeds into the crayons so they could be planted and grown into flowers. It should come as no surprise that a substantial percentage of global crayon sales are made directly to school systems. The idea of creating lesson plans for classrooms where children use their crayons to literally grow their artwork is awesome. Our plan is to launch the new crayon company later this year. Check back every once in a while for progress reports on the project.