Starbucks To Forgo Plastic Straws By 2020 Over Ocean Threat

Starbucks to ditch plastic straws globally by 2020 to help environment

The last straw? Starbucks pledges to eliminate plastic straws globally by 2020

The changes will help Starbucks (SBUX) eliminate more than 1 billion plastic straws per year, the company said.

For users who still want their drinks with a straw, the company said paper or biodegradable plastic will be available by request.

Last week, Seattle's ban on single-use plastic straws and utensils in food service outlets took effect, and Starbucks says it already offers alternative straws there. Its beverages will feature recyclable lids featuring a raised lip, like those pictured here.

"For our partners and customers, this is a significant milestone to achieve our global aspiration of sustainable coffee, served to our customers in more sustainable ways", said Kevin Johnson, president and chief executive officer for Starbucks. The strawless lid rollout will hit Seattle and Vancouver first, starting this fall, followed by "phased rollouts" in the US and Canada during fiscal year 2019 and a global rollout beginning in Europe.

And therefore, in one of the company's first moves towards this goal, they have introduced a new cup for their cold brews.

In its place, Starbucks will cap cold beverages with a special lid that doesn't require the use of a straw.

Americans supposedly use 500 million plastic straws every day-or not.

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Other cities, like Fort Meyers, have banned plastic straws.

Anti-straw activists often suggest using straws made of paper, metal or glass - or simply drinking without one.

This follows an announcement by McDonald's that it would switch to paper straws in the United Kingdom and Ireland by next year, and test alternatives to plastic straws in some USA locations.

Starbucks said more markets will follow until the chain meets its goal.

The UK government said that 1 million birds and more than 100,000 sea mammals die each year from eating and getting tangled in plastic waste. "We hope others will follow in [Starbucks'] footsteps".

A global rollout of the strawless lid will begin in Europe, starting with select stores in France and the Netherlands.

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