Following the announcement that McDonald’s will start phasing out plastic straws from some of its outlets, consumer watchdog, SumOfUs, urges the chain to “go further” and ban plastic straws in all their outlets worldwide, to tackle the growing crisis of plastic pollution.
The fast-food giant uses an estimated 95m straws worldwide daily. As of June 18, McDonald’s will launch a test allowing consumers in some of its outlets in some US cities, Norway and France – the company’s second biggest market in the world – to choose between two alternatives to replace the highly polluting plastic straw.
The news comes alongside an announcement that McDonald’s will remove plastic straws entirely from all its outlets in the UK and Ireland, from September following similar trials of alternatives.
“McDonald’s must now replicate this globally – while ensuring it continues to cater for disabled people in all its outlets. Indeed, all companies need to urgently take action to reduce the plastic pollution that they have contributed to for decades.”
Sondhya Gupta, Senior Campaigner at SumOfUs, said: “Almost 490,000 have people signed a SumOfUs petition calling on fast-food giant McDonald’s to stop giving plastic straws to customers.
“Today’s news of plans to remove the highly polluting straws from a selection of the chain’s outlets in France, Norway and some US cities, while phasing them out altogether in the UK and Ireland, is hugely welcome.
“But McDonald’s must now replicate this globally – while ensuring it continues to cater for disabled people in all its outlets. Indeed, all companies need to urgently take action to reduce the plastic pollution that they have contributed to for decades.”
Members of consumer watchdog SumOfUs have been asking McDonald’s to take action on plastic straws for almost a year. Almost 490,000 people have signed their petition calling for an outright ban on plastic straws and the campaign reached new heights as one member submitted a shareholder proposal to last month’s AGM asking the firm to report on its use of plastic straws. The measure was defeated but signals growing consumer pressure on the company to act.