Tuesday, 20 August, 2019


McDonald's new paper straws aren't recyclable - but its axed plastic ones were

A leaked memo has revealed McDonald's paper straws cannot currently be recycled. Credit PA A leaked memo has revealed McDonald's paper straws cannot currently be recycled. Credit PA
Kristine Garrett | 08 August, 2019, 11:12

McDonalds customers had complained that the straws make it hard to drink milkshakes and that they dissolve in carbonated drinks.

Tens of thousands of people have signed a petition calling on McDonald's to bring its plastic straws back, with the author writing that he wants them back so he can "drink my milkshake proper".

In response, the fast food giant thickened and strengthened the paper straws.

"We are working with our waste management providers to find a sustainable solution, as we did with paper cups, and so the advice to put paper straws in general waste is therefore temporary", the company's statement added.

Moving at speed means that while the materials the straws are made from are recyclable they can not now be processed by waste solution providers and local authorities.

Paper straws described as "eco-friendly" by fast food giant McDonald's can not yet be recycled by their waste solution providers, it has emerged.

As per reports, McDonald's had previously admitted to using 1.8 million plastic straws in its United Kingdom restaurants each day before the switchover.

After pressure from leftist groups to ditch the straws, which environmentalists say cause irreparable harm to Earth, the burger chain chose to switch to paper.

McDonald's also added that "This waste from our restaurants does not go to a landfill, but is used to generate energy".

The restaurant chain, which uses 1.8 million straws per day, has also come under fire on social media by customers questioning why they are still using the paper equivalents.

Stuart Foster, from recycling charity RECOUP, criticised McDonald's and said they'd been caught out trying to placate environmental campaigners. However we recognise this is something we need to continue to focus on.

In September 2017, JD Wetherspoon swapped from plastic straws to biodegradable paper ones instead. "It's now important that the final piece of putting the right infrastructure in place [to be able to recycle them in the country they are sold in] is focused on".

The newspaper quoted a company insider as saying: "When McDonald's introduced paper straws it was getting pats on the back for being environmentally responsible".

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