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September 07, 2019
Plastic straws have copped a lot of flack lately, and rightly so, the single use plastic straw is one of the most wasteful plastic products out there. In the United States alone, it is estimated they use over 500 million straws every single day. National Geographic reported as many as 8.3 billion plastic straws pollute the worlds beaches.
Closer to home, Sustainable Coastlines in Wellington pick up 10,000 plastic straws each year from Wellington’s beaches alone; putting straws in the top five of items in beach clean-up audits. It can take up to 200 years for a single plastic straw to break down in the ocean so its easy to see how they are taking a toll on the environment.
According to a 2018 study from a group of Australian scientists, straws make up 4% of all plastic waste that ends up in the ocean. If there was any doubt in peoples minds about the harmful effects of plastic straws the sea turtle video that went viral soon changed that.Major food conglomerates, such as McDonalds and Starbucks, are now making the move to ditch single-use plastic straws.So, we all know why to avoid plastic straws but what can we use instead?
Paper straws go soggy quickly. I have friends that go through at least three paper straws for one drink at movies because after five minutes the paper straws go soggy and we're seeing news reports, petitions and complaints on social media about McDonalds paper straws dissolving in milkshakes!
If we're going to offer a plastic free alternative it needs to be something that consumers like and will actually use, and of course it needs to be sustainable and safe.
In steps Ecome!
What makes our Ecome stainless steel straws a sustainable and safe option?Having worked in the preschool and child care sector for multiple years and having four young children myself, safety is an issue close to my heart. When developing our straws we saw a gap in the market for child safe stainless steel straws.
Unfortunately in 2016 Starbucks had to recall 2.5 million stainless steel straws due to reports of mouth lacerations in young children.So safety was a number 1 priority for us. We investigated an option of having a silicone cap on the end of the straws but felt this could be a potential choking hazard and make the straws difficult to clean. Instead we came up with our gently flared rounded off safety tips! We are proud of this design and feedback has been extremely positive.
Our straw tips have been rounded off so they are safe for little mouths (and adults!). There is no danger of scratches or cuts to the inside of your mouth.
We sell drinking straws, smoothie straws, and cocktail straws. In keeping with our environment beliefs we also developed a natural fibre bristle brush which is sturdy enough to give a good clean but still flexible enough to clean the bend in our drinking straw.
Our hydroplated straws come in a range of colours, for two reasons, one so kids know who’s is who’s (anything to stop arguments is a win in my books!) and to give a better mouth feel, as some people don’t like the feel of a stainless steel straw in their mouth but these have no metallic taste at all.
Our straws, and all of our products are sent in 100% compostable paper packaging.
For further information on our straws, paper packaging, or other products click here.
Although dishwasher safe, we recommend washing your straws in warm, soapy water using the included natural fibre cleaning brush.
Remember to check out our Facebook page and Facebook group here where we share eco living tips and let you know about our new and upcoming products.
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