Research shows that in the US alone 500 million plastic straws are used every day. And it’s fair to state that every plastic straw ever made still exists today, polluting landfills, rivers, roadsides, sewers, beaches and the oceans themselves.
There are many environmentally-friendly alternatives to plastic straws that can be used in pubs including paper, bioplastic and reusable stainless steel or glass straws.
Last year, a number of UK pub groups including Oakman Inns and Wetherspoons announced they’d be replacing plastic straws with a biodegradable alternative across all their pubs.
The issue has been covered in the media here over the past month, with many pubs and bars getting on board.
In November, Whelan’s live music venue in Dublin announced it had replaced all plastic straws with a bio-plastic version.
As part of its own campaign, IPG is offering members 10% off its 2018 membership if members pledge to phase out plastic straws in their pubs. The Federation claims that this has received great feedback and interest worldwide.
“We’re delighted to have received such a positive reaction from our members on this issue,” commented Averyl Quinn, IPG’s Community Manager, “The statistics on the environmental impact of plastic straws alone are shocking and we encourage all our members in Irish pubs worldwide to join us in our campaign to end the use of plastic straws and spread awareness on this topic.”
The UK has banned plastic microbeads, the miniscule plastic balls used in cosmetics and cleaning products and from 2020 all plastic cutlery and plates will be banned in France while Bangladesh claims to have been the first country in the world to ban plastic shopping bags in 2002. California banned single-use plastic bags 12 years later.