Words: Lucy Sarah O’Connell | Images: Supplied
It’s a topic that’s on everyone’s lips. Over the past three years, there has been mounting pressure on individuals and restaurants to stop using plastic straws. Today the #StopSucking movement is bigger than ever – and it’s not going anywhere anytime soon.
Leading the way is Ocean Basket, whose CEO, Grace Harding, is passionate about the preservation and conservation of the ocean. “The ocean and the waterways are our core focus as they form the foundation for our business success and provide the motivation for us all to become better and more responsible ocean citizens. We have a significant stake in maintaining an ocean that’s healthy and abundant. The ocean sustains us with the basic elements of life: it produces half the oxygen we breathe, helps to provide the water we drink and delivers us the very core of our business success – seafood.”
Since early 2017, Ocean Basket has been investigating alternatives to plastic for its restaurants, and since it officially introduced its biodegradable straws in November 2017, the response from the public has been incredible. “Our pilot project was hugely successful. Once people understood why we were changing, they were very open to the new options and wanted to engage and support the project. We’re in the process of building a movement within our stores to inspire all of us to prevent plastic pollution, reduce waste, improve recycling and live cleaner, healthier lives,” says Grace. With a big player like Ocean Basket leading the fight, don’t be surprised if you see a “No Straw” poster in your favourite local restaurant the next time you visit.
If you’d like to make sure that you’re also contributing to the cause, there are a few small changes that can make a big difference. When you’re at a restaurant or takeaway place, make it clear up front that you don’t want a straw with your drink. If you can’t live without one, consider buying a glass, paper, or steel straw. And if your favourite hangout is still using plastic straws, encourage them to join the movement and contribute towards a cleaner, better future. Stream Straws are a great glass alternative to plastic available online and at Wellness Warehouse in Parktown North and Illovo.
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