Earlier this year it was announced that all plastic straws and stirrers will be banned in England by April 2020 in an effort to reduce plastic pollution and its effect on the environment. With the deadline fast approaching, efforts are already being made by companies to ditch single-use plastics and offer consumers environmentally friendly alternatives.

In the past year, a global fast food giant has replaced all plastic straws with ‘eco-friendly’ paper alternatives in stores across the UK & Ireland. Given that this change was made from such a large corporation, there had been a real belief amongst the public that a sustainable alternative to plastic straws had been found. However, a recent controversy has since hit this seemingly positive move.

After an internal memo revealed that the paper straws must be put in general waste bins and then burned, the fast food chain admitted that their ‘eco-friendly’ paper straws are not recyclable. Worse still, the plastic straws that these replaced were 100%, widely recyclable. It is claimed that although the materials used to develop the paper straws are recyclable, their thickness makes it difficult for them to be processed by waste solution providers. Unlike their plastic counterparts then, paper straws have yet to be developed in a way that allows them to be widely recycled, or the infrastructure of the cardboard/paper recycling needs to be improved to accept these straws.

With the plastics ban fast approaching, only time will tell if paper straws will be in a position ready to replace single-use plastic straws. For now at least, recyclable plastic straws like those previously used at this fast food establishment have to be considered the more sustainable, eco-friendly solution until the days comes that paper straws can be recycled. Euro Extrusions Ltd is a market leading plastic sheet extruder based in Lancashire, England.

Euro Extrusions has years of experience in delivering quality products, including thermoplastic sheet and film in High Impact Polystyrene (HIPS), ABS and Polypropylene (PP). This includes HIPS Sheet, HIPS Roll, HIPS Film, ABS roll, ABS sheet Polypropylene (PP) Rolls and Polypropylene (PP) sheet. Please call or email for more information. Euro Extrusions has worked with a wide range of industries to deliver high-quality plastics and also offers customers a plastic waste recycling service. Euro Extrusions continues to invest in innovation, allowing it to adapt to its clients’ needs.

To find out more about Euro Extrusions’ products and services, speak to a member of the team on 1254 886662 or contact us here.