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Shops > News > McDonalds to Only use Paper Straws from now on

McDonalds to Only use Paper Straws from now on

Posted : 06/07/2018 - Food/Health - Way of consumption

McDonalds has announced it is set to replace its plastic straws with environmentally friendly paper straws in all of its stores within the UK and Ireland.

With news that the government is planning to place a ban on the sale of plastic straws in England, McDonalds are due to withdraw plastic straws from September 2018.

Impact on the environment

With growing concern amongst the public with regards to single-use plastics and their impact on the environment, particularly on marine life and the accumulation of plastics in the oceans, a trial in selected restaurants has resulted in positive feedback from customers.

McDonalds currently have 1361 restaurants in the UK. The chief executive, Paul Pomroy said: 'Our customers told us they wanted to see a move on straws...without compromising their overall experience at the restaurants'. The global chain is responding to increasing concern about the use of an estimated 8.5 billion plastic straws per year.

The paper straws that should have replaced the plastic straws in all of the company's UK and Ireland branches by 2019 will be recyclable in store and made using environmentally friendly biodegradable paper sourced for certifiably sustainable sources. They will be made using fully recycled materials. Although the current petroleum-based plastic straws are currently recyclable, they rarely are. Although they are not the biggest plastic polluter in the oceans, they can be amongst the most hazardous due to their size making it easy for marine life to ingest.

The mortality rate amongst marine animals that ingest plastic is 50%, and so the move from plastic to paper straws will go some way to protecting the wildlife and marine animals. The current straws take hundreds of years to decompose if not recycled, and with around 1.8 million straws being used in the company's UK restaurants each day, it poses a significant problem 

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