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Starbucks' Iconic Green Plastic Straws Are No More!

Amidst the Worldwide 'plastic bag ban' and a tirade to reduce single-use plastic all together, coffee giant 'starbucks' has thrown their full weight behind the cause. 

The coffee chain announced it will eliminate plastic straws at its 28,000 stores, starting in Vancouver and Seattle, beginning immediately.

In a statement from Starbucks News, they said "We will eliminate single-use plastic straws from its more than 28,000 company operated and licensed stores by making a strawless lid or alternative-material straw options available, around the world. Starbucks, the largest food and beverage retailer to make such a global commitment, anticipates the move will eliminate more than one billion plastic straws per year from Starbucks stores."

"Starbucks has designed, developed and manufactured a strawless lid, which will become the standard for all iced coffee, tea and espresso beverages. The lid is currently available in more than 8,000 stores in the U.S. and Canada for select beverages including Starbucks Draft Nitro and Cold Foam. The lid is also being piloted for Nitro beverages in additional markets including China, Japan, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam. In addition, Starbucks will begin offering straws made from alternative materials – including paper or compostable plastic - for Frappuccino® blended beverages, and available by request for customers who prefer or need a straw."

"Phased rollouts are set to follow within the U.S. and Canada. A global rollout of the strawless lid will follow, beginning in Europe where strawless lids will arrive in select stores in France and the Netherlands, as well as in the UK just as the market expands its 5p paper cup charge to 950 stores, to further promote reusability."

“Starbucks goal to eliminate plastic straws by 2020 from their stores globally represents the company’s forward thinking in tackling the material waste challenge in totality,” said Erin Simon, director of sustainability research & development and material science at World Wildlife Fund, U.S. “Plastic straws that end up in our oceans have a devastating effect on species. As we partner with Starbucks in waste reduction initiatives such as Next Gen Consortium Cup Challenge and WWF’s Cascading Materials Vision, we hope others will follow in their footsteps."

“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. With eight million metric tons of plastic entering the ocean every year, we cannot afford to let industry sit on the sidelines, and we are grateful for Starbucks leadership in this space,” said Nicholas Mallos, director of Ocean Conservancy’s Trash Free Seas program."

Some people don't think it's enough of a big move and calls for Starbucks to do more,

Most, however, are seeing this as an opportunity to call on other businesses to follow in the footsteps,

This is not the first time Starbucks has been involved in a fight for sustainability, as they have previously achieved 99% ethically sourced, sustainable coffee for all of their stores, globally. They are also heavily involved in the 'FoodShare' program where they donate unsold food to food banks around the U.S.

Starbucks looks to be making money-moves left and right, keep up everyone.

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