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

Lloyd Doyle
July 9, 2018

The Seattle-based company said Monday it will also use lids designed not to need straws.

Starbucks (sbux) will replace plastic straws with recyclable strawless lids, which it will serve with all of its iced coffee, tea, and espresso drinks.

Plastic straws contribute to ocean pollution and pose a danger to marine life. The new designs have drawn comparisons to an adult "sippy cup".

Starbucks said that it will begin using the strawless alternatives in Seattle and Vancouver stores by this fall, and expand to the USA and Canada, followed by other global locations, in fiscal year 2019.

Kevin Johnson, Starbucks president and CEO, called the move a "significant milestone to achieve our global aspiration of sustainable coffee, served to our customers in more sustainable ways".

Starbucks will start rolling out strawless lids for all drinks in the fall. The company already offers alternative straws in Seattle. The transition will be complete in 2019, the company said.

The announcement comes after Seattle, Starbucks' home market, banned restaurants from using plastic straws and utensils on July 1.

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

McDonald's also 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 USA locations.

"Plastic straws that end up in our oceans have a devastating effect on species", said Erin Simon, director of sustainability research & development and material science at World Wildlife Fund, US, in a statement. Phased rollouts within the USA and Canada will then follow. Straws add up to only about 2,000 tons of the almost 9m tons of plastic waste that hits waters each year.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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