The Digest: Starbucks Is Replacing Plastic Straws With "Sippy Cups" for Adults


Starbucks says it will replace plastic straws in stores globally with ones made from other materials by 2020, a nod to the growing push for businesses to be more environmentally friendly.

The exception to the new lid will be the Frappuccino, which will be served with a paper or compostable straw.

The move is expected to eliminate the use of more than 1 billion straws a year. According to a release, Starbucks said the lid is now available in more than 8,000 stores in the USA and Canada for select beverages, including Draft Nitro and Cold Foam.

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The announcement comes a week after Seattle, where the coffee house is headquartered, became one of the first high-profile cities in the ban straws.

Starbucks has designed, developed and manufactured an alternative their calling a strawless lid.

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. And it's a part of Starbucks' $10 million investment in creating recyclable and compostable cups around the world.

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"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.

Moving away from plastic straws, the cafe has created a "sippy cup" style lid to feature on all their cold brews and lemonades. McDonald's said in June it would start switching to paper straws in the United Kingdom and Ireland in September.

McDonald's shareholders voted down a proposal requesting a report on plastic straws in May. Straws add up to about 2,000 tons of the almost 9 million tons of plastic waste that ends up in waters around the globe each year. "We hope others will follow in [Starbucks'] footsteps". "With eight million metric tons of plastic entering the ocean every year, we can not afford to let industry sit on the sidelines".

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