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Starbucks plans to stop offering plastic straws by 2020
09 July 2018, 08:10 | Edward Lowe
Starbucks will eliminate plastic straws from its stores globally by 2020, in a nod to the growing push for businesses to be more environmentally friendly.
Instead, its beverages will be capped with strawless lids - reminiscent of an "adult sippy cup" - or served with straws made from alternative materials "including paper or compostable plastic", according to a statement.
Alternative-material straws such as paper or compostable plastic will be rolled-out for Frappuccino beverages, and they will also be available for customers upon request if they would prefer a straw.
"This move is an answer to our own partners about what we can do to reduce the need for straws", said Colleen Chapman, vice president of Starbucks global social impact overseeing sustainability.
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Starbucks said the new strawless lids will first be implemented in Seattle and Vancouver in the third quarter of this year.
"With 8 million metric tons of plastic entering the ocean every year, we can not afford to let industry sit on the sidelines, and we are grateful for Starbucks leadership in this space", Nicholas Mallos, director of Ocean Conservancys Trash Free Seas program, said in the release. Similar proposals are being considered in places like NY and San Francisco.
The European Commission has proposed new rules that would ban the 10 biggest plastic pollutants found on Europe's beaches and in European waters, including plastic cotton buds, cutlery, plates, straws, stir sticks and balloon sticks.
Other companies have also been ditching plastic straws in recent months. McDonald's said earlier this year that it would stop using plastic straws at all of its stores in the United Kingdom and Ireland.
Walt Disney World has banned plastic straws at some of its theme parks, while the Smithsonian Institution has taken steps to eliminate them from its museums.
"With eight million metric tons of plastic entering the ocean every year, we can not afford to let industry sit on the sidelines", he said in a statement.
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