5 alternatives to a single use plastic straw
A Single-Use Plastic Straw. Made of a non renewable resource called fossile fuel. Made to be used for only a few minutes, last in our environment forever….
First of all 4 Reasons to ditch the plastic straw:
- 500 million single use straws are getting used once and thrown away daily in the U.S. alone!!! Worldwide it’s approximately 1 billion straws!
- Is it worth it? Plastic Straws are in the top 5 of the most common found objects on clean ups around the world. Animals mistake plastic in the ocean for food, and I have found a lot of straws on the beach with bite marks already.
- Plastic cannot get digested, thats the reason why some animals starve to death with a stuffed belly… Or their intestines get hurt when they eat sharp plastic bits.
- Most plastic contains polypropylene and BPA, otherwise known as Bisphenol A, which can leak chemicals into the liquid. It is especially more present if you drink hot beverages out of plastic because the heat of liquid heats up the plastic. BPA is said to cause obesity, on-set puberty, and other issues.
We can change that! It’s our choice and power to refuse the single use plastic straw! (The Last Plastic Straw)
A reusable straw is great if it comes to refuse all the single use plastic straws that come along in your smoothie, water, soda, cocktail and sometimes even in hot coffee drinks.
Here in the U.S. I see many restaurants serving straws with water, as if we can’t drink out of glasses anymore? I see so many people who doesn’t even want the straw, taking them out of the drink the same second they get served.
Alternative to single use plastic straws you can chose between stainless steel straws, glass straws, bamboo straws and paper straws. Paper straws are single use and therefor the best alternative for parties or if you run a business like a coffee shop or bar, while personally for your daily life I would chose a reusable straw. Or just drink without any straw.
Always have a brush for your reusable straw too so you can clean it properly.
For traveling I would definitely recommend Bamboo or Stainless steel.
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5 Alternatives to Plastic Straws:
1) Paper Straws
You are planning a Party, or even running a business like a coffee shop/restaurant/bar and want to make some greener, happier choices for the planet?
Easy swap: Get some paper straws instead of plastic straws.
- I found so many plastic straws on clean ups on river fronts and beaches. It’s one of the most common items people find on clean ups. In the U.S. alone they use and throw away 500 million straws in one day! Worldwide its approximately 1 billion single use straws!
- Paper straws are compostable and biodegradable. So even if a paper straw is getting littered, or end up in the ocean it will degrade so much quicker than a plastic straw.
- Plastic is not biodegrading, it is breaking down to micro plastic that pollute our water and end up in our food chain (sea salt, fish, mussels, water,..)
- I had my first smoothies with a paper Straw when I traveled to Bali, and it made no difference in taste to me. But it made the difference that I had a better feeling, knowing I won’t see this straw getting washed onshore while relaxing on a beach!
2) The unbreakable stainless steel straw
It’s sometimes not always easy to refuse the plastic straw. The bartenders in Restaurants and Bars and Coffee Shops are so used to put a straw in your drink even if you order “no straw please”. It can easily happen they don’t remember when preparing the drink. But if you actually show them your reusable straw, they might remember you!
- Stainless steel straws are awesome to bring with you on a party, on travels, to restaurants, etc.
- They don’t break, easy to clean with a small brush.
- Stainless steel is 100% recyclable and loses none of its original physical properties in the process.
- Approximately 90% of end-of-life stainless steel is collected and recycled into new products. If you compare with plastic: A whooping 91% of plastic is NOT getting recycled.
- Not only can you refuse many single use plastic straws with your reusable but they also look awesome in your drink.
- Some people can’t stand the taste of stainless steel from stainless steel bottles or straws, so you should try out if you have problems with the taste. If you don’t like it take a look at glass straws or bamboo straws.
If you can’t find reusable stainless steel straws in the shops around you take a look online, you will find a few different options.
3) The glass straw
On Bali we’ve been served drinks with Glass Straws in many locations. So nice and really smooth to drink through.
If you don’t like the taste of stainless steel or bamboo, this is the reusable straw for you!
Easy to clean and available in different colors.
- Glass is a resource which can be recycled time and time again without the quality deteriorating.
- Glass is a safe option, it does not leak chemicals.
- Glass preserves taste and vitamins.
- They use really strong glass for the straws, so you could even carry them around in a sleeve in your bag. But be aware it is not unbreakable.
If you are looking for something unbreakable check out the Stainless Steel Straws or Bamboo Straws.
4) The natural straw
Daily 1 billion straws are getting used once and thrown away world wide. Not getting recycled, ending up in landfill or in our ocean and sadly often animals mistake them for food. It’s time to change single use plastic for alternatives and compostables.
If you don’t like the taste of steel but still want an unbreakable straw, and looking for a real natural plastic straw alternative? I have seen some restaurants using pasta as straws, or now there are eatable straws on the market made from rice or apple. And of course bamboo!
Let’s take a look at bamboo straws.
- Bamboo is a renewable, biodegradable and fast growing resource, so a great material to use. And a great natural alternative to all the single use plastic straws. A total natural alternative to the polluting plastic straws.
- Bamboo is compostable. But you should check with your local compost facility because some of them don’t allow them because they might compost too slow for the facility.
- Bamboo is super strong and super kid-friendly! No sharp edges, no risk of breakage – simply toss the straw in your bag and you’re ready to go. No need to worry about your kids either – bamboo straws are said to be the safest in straw alternatives.
- Bamboo Straws are washable and reusable. One straw can last for years and years when cared for.
- They grow naturally, so the inside diameter can vary a little. It can even be a little curved, so you need to try if you can use a small brush. If the brush won’t go through put them in a jar with warm water and soap and shake them clean.
5) Or just Stop sucking! 😉
Just “stop Sucking” and order your drink with no straw. I actually don’t need straws at all and drink my smoothies with a little help of a reusable spoon;)
So let’s stop sucking or let’s get a reusable straw.
So much more classy than a single use plastic straw anyway 😉
What’s your favorite Straw? Or don’t you need a straw at all?
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