The International Trend Committee of Spielwarenmesse has announced the most important impulses for the sector. Sustainability, individuality and reality characterise the toy trends for 2020.

Every year, experts determine the trends that determine the industry for the International Spielwarenmesse. What is a trend? What moves consumers? This year’s TrendCommittee includes twelve insiders from all over the world. Among them are Steven Ekstrat (USA), publisher of the magazine License Global; Dr. Maria Costa (Spain), head of the Children’s Research Centre at the AIJU Institute; and Axel Dammler (Germany), managing partner of iconkids & youth. They have identified three trends that will shape industry and the world around children and young people in the coming year. These trends are “Toys for Future”, “Digital goes Physical” and “Be You! They can be experienced at the International Toy Fair from 29 January to 2 February 2020. There, the TrendGallery in Hall 3A, measuring around 1,000 square metres, will be the starting point for new products. On the Trend Islands, trade visitors will also find the right products to discover and try out. But what is behind the individual trends?

Sustainability is one of the toy trends for 2020

The Fridays for Future movement shows how important environmental protection and sustainability are for the younger generation. The toy industry in particular is oriented towards current topics and depicts the world in miniature. Toys for Future” products focus on climate protection and the responsible use of resources. On the one hand, they communicate environmentally friendly behaviour in the game and promote environmental awareness. In this way, even the smallest children are made aware of this topic. On the other hand, this trend also includes toys with a corresponding sustainability aspect. This takes place in the form of ecological materials or products created by upcycling or recycling. These toys are not only fun to play with, they also protect the environment. Particularly in Germany, there are already many manufacturers who are consciously opting for “made in Germany”. They have their products manufactured in the Federal Republic of Germany and use materials carefully and gently.

Digital goes physical - virtual figures become real

From the digital world into the children’s room: Hits from TV, YouTube and Co. shape the toy trends. Characters from series, cartoons or games are becoming more and more popular license themes. With the trend “Digital goes Physical” the digital characters are transferred into the classic toy world. The real counterparts expand the virtual level and enable new gaming experiences. This opens up new sales opportunities for the toy industry with plush animals, action figures, board games, puzzles and much more. However, it is important to be involved at an early stage and to focus on the right topic. Market research and trend analysts provide important information when it comes to selecting the right licenses.

Be You! - Integration shapes toy trends

The world is colourful and diverse. Playing connects regardless of origin, religion and outward appearance. This is the basic idea of the toy trend “Be You”. It combines two approaches. On the one hand it wants to promote people with special needs. People with disabilities or illnesses such as dementia or Parkinson’s often have special demands on the feel and handling of toys. They can playfully train their mental and motor abilities and create joint experiences. On the other hand, products of this trend want to sensitize people to tolerance, inclusion and diversity. This can be started early on. Young children in particular are often carefree and unprejudiced in their dealings with other people. Playing together can strengthen togetherness and create understanding for one another.


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Link: Spielwarenmesse has announced trends for next year.

Image: Spielwarenmesse eG /Alex Schelbert