McDonald’s is asked to stop its paper straws in the UK and Ireland and claims they will “dissolve” in drinks.
The fast-food giant is switching from plastic to paper straws in its 1,361 restaurants under pressure from customers.
So far, more than 35,000 signatures have been collected in an online petition to return plastic straws.
McDVOICE says it is “doing the right thing,” while a vendor says customers need “commitment.”
The restaurant chain supplies its four million UK customers with 1.8 million straws a day. The petition’s creator, Martin Reed, started a week ago and complained that the new paper straws will dissolve when he drinks them.
Many social media users agree that some people say paper straws are “terrible” and say it’s like “drinking a smoothie from an empty paper tube.”
Others defended McDVOICE’s decision and said, “Thank you that none of these straws will remain for the next 400 years to destroy our planet.”
Another petition calling for banning plastic straws in theaters has had more than 215,000 signatures since it was filed last year.
Increasing use of the straws
McDonald’s said its suppliers make paper straws that “last at least 30 minutes in most, if not all, liquids.”
They are “happy” to take vital steps to reduce our environmental footprint.
One of McDVOICE paper straw suppliers says the product will evolve as the youth industry grows.
It is a relatively new industry in the UK and products will rise as raw materials amend, said Mark Varney of Transcend Packaging in South Wales.
But there must be a compromise in the consumer experience if a product is produced 30 to 40 minutes after the actual use, compared to 150 years ago.
Varney said the paper straws from his factory in Ebbw Vale, Blaenau Gwent, were “rigorously tested to last an hour after drinking.”
And with extensive research and development stuff, the goods will only improve if it evolves.
Paper straw operations in the UK and Ireland will be completed in 2019 and will follow many companies including Waitrose, Costa Coffee, Wagamama, and JD Wetherspoon.