Strawless Revolution Reaches Singapore

The global push to eliminate or limit the use of plastic straws and lids has spread across the Pacific. Burger King Singapore announced this month that it had stopped giving dine-in customers straws and plastic lids for beverages in its 42 outlets.

“The removal of straws and lids will help our guests rethink whether they really need them and get everyone to do their part in keeping the environment clean,” Burger King Singapore general manager Goh Chin Hou told the New Paper. “It may seem like a drop in the ocean, but when more organizations adopt the initiative, we believe it will send a positive signal to the community, and we hope that ripples will eventually turn to waves.”

Burger King isn’t the first QSR brand in Singapore to reduce straw use. In June, KFC Singapore announced they would no longer be serving beverages with plastic caps or straws at their 84 restaurants. Singapore’s shift to remove straws follows those in North America and Europe over the past summer.

A&W Food Services of Canada marked World Oceans Day in June by pledging to eliminate plastic straws from all of its 925 restaurants by the end of 2018. It will offer customers compostable, sustainably sourced paper straws which last two to three hours in a drink without breaking down, but naturally biodegrade in three to six months.

In July, Starbucks pledged to eliminate more than 1 billion plastic straws per year from its stores worldwide by 2020; the company recently started offering strawless lids.

And in June, McDonald’s announced it would begin replacing plastic straws with paper straws in the U.K. and Ireland. Belgian McDonald’s restaurants also are testing straw alternatives, with more trials planned for select restaurants in the U.S., France, Sweden, Malaysia, Norway and Australia later this year.

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