Wednesday, February 20, 2019
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Starbucks is expected to scrap plastic straws worldwide by 2020



A bill proposed in California would make it illegal for restaurant servers to give guests plastic straws unless they are asked to – with the threat of a $ 1,000 fine or imprisonment.

Starbucks plans to eliminate Plastic straws worldwide by 2020.

The coffee shop giant announced on Monday that it will use recyclable straw-less lids and an alternative-material-straw option in its more than 28,000 stores around the world. The move will eliminate more than a billion plastic straws from Starbucks stores per year, the company said.

"For our partners and customers, this is a significant milestone in achieving our global quest for sustainable coffee that will serve our customers more sustainably," said Kevin Johnson, President and CEO of Starbucks in a statement.

The chain joins a growing number of similar undertakings, including Alaska Airlines, Hilton and AccorHotels hotel chains, Royal Caribbean and Cunard cruise lines, and hospitality giant Bon Appétit Management, which has more than 1,000 locations in 33 states Universities and museums belong.

Last month, McDonald's announced that it would begin testing plastic straw alternatives later this year at various sites in the United States.

Americans use an estimated 500 million disposable straws a day, according to Eco-Cycle.

Starbuck's newly designed straw-free lid is used for all frozen coffee, tea and espresso drinks. The eco-friendly lid is now available in over 8,000 US and Canadian stores for select drinks, including nitro and cold foam.

The coffee merchant will also offer straws made from alternative materials – including paper or compostable plastic – for Frappuccino drinks. These new straws will also be made available to customers who prefer or need a straw, the company said.

As of this fall, Starbucks customers in Seattle and Vancouver will receive the first straw-less lids, which will be phased in during the 2019 fiscal year in the US and Canada. A global rollout will follow, starting in Europe where the strawless lids will arrive shops in France, the Netherlands and the UK

New straw-less lid from Starbucks. (Photo: Starbucks)

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A plastic straw ban in Seattle, Starbucks's hometown, came into effect on July 1, making it the first major city to become active. Malibu, California, Miami Beach, Florida, and Monmouth Beach, N.J., also prohibit disposable sippers.

Other communities that ponder the same kind of action are Portland and New York City; California is considering a nationwide ban.

Strengthening the environmental movement and worrying about the many straws that pollute the oceans and waterways increase movement.

Anti-straw activists often suggest using straws made of paper, metal or glass – or simply without drinking. Among the big names banning straw bans are actor Adrian Grenier, New England Patriot quarterback Tom Brady and actor Kendrick Sampson.

Grenier, best known for his role in the TV show entourage, Starbucks urged at its shareholder meeting in Seattle in March to take action.

"Starbucks has shown the world how to drink coffee, and I firmly believe that Starbucks can teach the world how to make the environment the ultimate business partner," said Grenier. "The siren calls, I hope you all listen to her."

An online petition requesting Starbucks to say goodbye to plastic straws has nearly 150,000 signatures.

This is not the first time Starbucks has taken into account the impact of its customers on the environment. For example, in March, the company announced a $ 10 million challenge to develop a disposable coffee cup that is compostable.

As of Tuesday, July 10, Starbucks will also be adding two new, permanent additions to its cold coffee menu in the US and Canada: Salted Cream Cold Foam Cold Brew with a straw-free lid; and Iced Vanilla Bean coconut milk latte, consisting of vanilla bean and coconut milk, shaken with ice, with shots of Starbucks Signature Espresso.

Starbucks shares closed at $ 48.98 on Friday, up 37 cents, or 0.76%.


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Follow USA TODAY Reporter Zlati Meyer on Twitter: @ZlatiMeyer

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