Starbucks wants to become more sustainable

Author: Mario Schmidtgen
Date: 11.07.2018

Waiver of plastic straws

The well-known US coffee chain Starbucks wants to become more sustainable and decided to forego plastic straws. By 2020, the straws shall be banned from the around 28,000 US branches, as the Stern reports. Customers will soon be drinking from a jar with a special lid that will eliminate the need for straws or use straws made of alternative materials. The lid is currently in the initial phase and used in 8,000 US stores.

Starbucks manager Kevin Johnson describes the step as an “important milestone” on the way to becoming more sustainable. The result is worth mentioning: every year one billion straws shall be saved.

In addition to the EU, the US also wants to produce less plastic waste. The Starbucks headquarter in Seattle has for example banned the usage of straws since the first of July. Last week, the fast-food chain McDonalds also announced to test alternative straw materials in the US and if the results are positive to use them worldwide.

Problem of paper and plastic cups

In addition to the problem with the straws, there is another major problem: the plastic and paper cups. According to estimations, 600 billion plastic and paper cups are used worldwide and Starbucks alone can be attributed to four billion. At the same time the recycling rate is well below one percent. As another business idea, Starbucks announced in March 2018 that they will replace the paper and plastic cups with fully compostable cups over the next three years. The problem here: The promise was already given in 2008. At that time, the recycling cups should come to the stores in 2015.