Health and Healthcare Systems

These toymakers are giving their products a COVID-19 twist for Christmas

Marie-Eve Rougeot, chief executive officer of Spanish toy maker Famosa, poses as she holds a Nancy doll, one of Spain's most beloved toys, wearing a protective mask, during an interview with Reuters at company's headquarters in Madrid, Spain, November 30, 2020. Picture taken November 30, 2020. REUTERS/Sergio Perez - RC2XIK9DMQB6

Famosa CEO Marie-Eve Rougeot told Reuters the mask-wearing doll had been a hit since went on sale in September. Image: REUTERS/Sergio Perez

Emma Pinedo
Writer, Reuters
Catarina Demony
Correspondent, Reuters
Share:
Our Impact
What's the World Economic Forum doing to accelerate action on Health and Healthcare Systems?
The Big Picture
Explore and monitor how Retail, Consumer Goods and Lifestyle is affecting economies, industries and global issues
A hand holding a looking glass by a lake
Crowdsource Innovation
Get involved with our crowdsourced digital platform to deliver impact at scale
Stay up to date:

Retail, Consumer Goods and Lifestyle

  • Toymakers in Spain and Portugal are making Christmas presents that reflect the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • These include dolls wearing masks, as well as toy medical kits.
  • Whilst the toys might seem like novel gifts, they actually help children to understand the importance of working masks.

Children in Spain and Portugal could find that their Christmas presents this year reflect the coronavirus pandemic as dolls wearing face masks, kits for making personal protection items, and other toys adapted to fit the times fly off shop shelves.

Loading...

Millions of kids around the world were stuck in their homes during a series of lockdowns, and when they did emerge, they were often told to wear masks.

So, as the holiday season approached, some toymakers gave their toys a twist.

“I think it’s a way of adapting to reality,” said mum Reyes Lopez as she looked around a toy store in Madrid. “Dolls also have to represent society.”

In the shop, some of Spanish toymaker Famosa’s popular Nancy dolls were wearing a protective mask. Another set of dolls came with a virus tester which can detect if the toy is “infected”. If it is, the child can cure it by tickling it.

“Putting a mask on their dolls helps (kids) realise they need to wear one themselves,” shopper Cristina Hernandez said.

Shop manager Adela Haro said the COVID-19-related toys were selling well, while Famosa CEO Marie-Eve Rougeot told Reuters the mask-wearing doll had been a hit since went on sale in September.

“When children face going to the doctor or having a test, they will be less anxious,” Rougeot said of the toys.

In neighbouring Portugal, firm Science4You said sales of its toys related to the virus were booming, especially online as people stayed away from big shopping malls due to fear of contagion.

A Nancy doll, one of Spain's most beloved toys, is seen wearing a protective face mask at the headquarters of Spanish toy maker Famosa, in Madrid, Spain, November 30, 2020. Picture taken November 30, 2020. REUTERS/Sergio Perez - RC2XIK983OFT
A Nancy doll, one of Spain's most beloved toys, is seen wearing a protective face mask. Image: REUTERS/Sergio Perez

One of the toymaker’s top hits is a kit of 15 activities that include making masks, face shields and star-shaped soap.

“If we make it fun, children will learn much more about the virus and how to keep away from it,” Science4You’s chief executive Miguel Pina Martins said as he pointed at the anti-virus lab package, which costs around 20 euros.

The innovations are also a way for toy makers to adapt to the economic impact of the pandemic.

“The toy market is going through a difficult time...there are no birthday parties since March,” Pina said. “We tried to find a way to surf this giant tsunami.”

Science4You said they had sold more than 8,000 anti-virus lab kits since it came on the market in mid-July.

Though studies have showed that children are less likely than adults to get severe cases of COVID-19 infection, they can still carry the virus.

Loading...
Loading...
Loading...
Loading...
Don't miss any update on this topic

Create a free account and access your personalized content collection with our latest publications and analyses.

Sign up for free

License and Republishing

World Economic Forum articles may be republished in accordance with the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International Public License, and in accordance with our Terms of Use.

The views expressed in this article are those of the author alone and not the World Economic Forum.

Share:
World Economic Forum logo
Global Agenda

The Agenda Weekly

A weekly update of the most important issues driving the global agenda

Subscribe today

You can unsubscribe at any time using the link in our emails. For more details, review our privacy policy.

The care economy is one of humanity's most valuable assets. Here's how we secure its future

Kim Piaget

May 21, 2024

About Us

Events

Media

Partners & Members

  • Join Us

Language Editions

Privacy Policy & Terms of Service

© 2024 World Economic Forum