Starbucks is getting rid of plastic straws

Starbucks is ditching plastic straws from all of its locations in the next two years, citing the environmental threat to oceans.

A new strawless lid will begin to appear in Seattle and Vancouver Starbucks locations this fall, with phased rollouts within the U.S. and Canada to follow next year. The strawless lids will then be introduced around the world.

The lid that is replacing the straws is also made of plastic, but the company says that its polypropylene content can be widely recycled. “By nature, the straw isn’t recyclable and the lid is, so we feel this decision is more sustainable and more socially responsible,” said Chris Milne, director of packaging sourcing for Starbucks. “Starbucks is finally drawing a line in the sand and creating a mold for other large brands to follow. We are raising the water line for what’s acceptable and inspiring our peers to follow suit.”

 

Environmental advocates praised the company’s decision.

“Starbucks’ decision to phase out single-use plastic straws is a shining example of the important role that companies can play in stemming the tide of ocean plastic,” said Nicholas Mallos, director of Ocean Conservancy’s Trash Free Seas program. “With eight million metric tons of plastic entering the ocean every year, we cannot afford to let industry sit on the sidelines.”

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