Starbucks is eliminating plastic straws from all stores

Jul 10, 2018, 04:09
Starbucks is eliminating plastic straws from all stores

By 2020, consumers will no longer be able to get single-use plastic straws at all Starbucks stores globally.

The company said it is the largest food and beverage retailer to make such a commitment-a decision that will eliminate more than 1 billion plastic straws per year from its stores.

"Starbucks has designed, developed and manufactured a strawless lid, which will become the standard for all iced coffee, tea and espresso beverages", the company said in a news release. McDonald's shareholders voted down a proposal requesting a report on plastic straws in May, although it recently said it would switch to paper straws in the United Kingdom and Ireland by next year, and test alternatives to plastic straws in some US locations. Last week, Seattle became the latest city to ban plastic utensils and straws.

Starbucks said the conversion will be complete by 2020. "Metal straws can be risky for people with neurological conditions such as Parkinson's whereas reusable plastic straws present hygiene concerns to people with specific health conditions".

Starbucks said the new strawless lids will first be implemented in Seattle and Vancouver in the third quarter of this year.

To eliminate straws, Starbucks is transitioning from the flat, plastic lids that require them, to ones that feature a raised lip you can drink from. Plastic straws never completely decompose and can be harmful, even fatal, to animals that ingest them.

Local government officials across the country are considering banning plastic straws, and some Charlottesville businesses have gotten a head start.

The strawless lid, which features a raised lip, is already available in more than 8,000 stores in the USA and Canada for select beverages.

The effort to reduce waste is part of a partnership with the World Wildlife Fund's Cascading Materials Vision program, the statement said.

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