Oyasai Crayons: An Eco-Friendly Option Based On Food Waste

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Our crayons and other school supplies are harming the planet in a big way. Even as we gift children a box of colorful crayons, little do we consider the harmful effect it has on the environment. Oyasai crayons take that into mind.

The resources that go into crayons, the process of making them are things that we never stop to consider. But a company in Japan has devised a technique to produce the omnipresent crayon with natural plant-based ingredients with their product, the Oyasai Crayons.

Neither do we consider whether it is safe for the child who gets the gift. Do we even wonder the reason for the stickiness of the crayons even as your child creates the latest masterpiece? To answer your question, not only are the crayons not safe, they are highly toxic that constantly expose the child to dangerous chemicals. And to top it all, the harmless-looking colorful box is a burden on the environment.

Vegetable Waste Is Used To Make Oyasai Crayons

Oyasai Crayons on the other hand are made from vegetables and rice. Rice-bran oil and rice wax are the base ingredients here. It is derived from rice bran, which is a byproduct of the process of rice polishing. The colors come from vegetables and plants that have been recycled.

The company collects food waste such as the discarded outer leaves from plants and vegetables and converts them into various crayon colors. It is similar to the pigment used in food coloring. Oyasai Crayons are thus made from materials that have been completely sourced from natural products. This ensures that you can rest assured even if your child chews the crayons, as some children tend to do.

Oyasai crayons are the brainchild of Naoko Kimura who discovered that bright and stable colors could be derived from plants while he was parenting from his home and also occupied as a designer.

He observed that a part of the vegetables was discarded as they did not meet stringent food standards. But they could be used to produce colors. Oyasai crayons are made in Kimura’s native country, Japan.

The Oyasai crayons come in 10 colors and the natural products include green onion, yam, burdock, long potato, apple, snow carrot, purple potato, cassis, and bamboo charcoal (takesumi).

Read: Biodegradable Toothpaste Tubes: Say Hello To These New Inventions

Oyasai crayons conform to the stringent JIS standards for crayon quality and strength. The product has also earned the EU standard for toy safety for its strict safety protocols (EN71-3:2013). Oyasai crayons have also earned various design awards.

Even though every ingredient of the product is food grade, Kimura advises that medical help should be immediately sought if a child ingests a piece of the crayon as it is not a piece of food. 

Feature Image credits: Mizuiro

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