NO straws please!

How it all started

This page documented my year journey of saying no to straws. Although I had been doing this for a while, I decided to keep, and document, all the straws I ended up with. I thought it would be interesting to see over the course of one year (17th Feb 2017 – 16th Feb 2018) how many straws I got. Each one has a story as to how and why I got it. For more information about the issue with straws, check out my original post that inspired this page.

  1.  19th Feb 17, thin red and white stripes. From a resort in Montezuma, Costa Rica. They had a sign stating “straws on request”, I commented on this and congratulated them for being so forward thinking, my cocktail then arrived with a straw! When challenged the staff member explained that I “needed” something to stir it with!! I expressed my disappointment.
  2. 26th Feb 17, white. Hotel in Carate, Costa Rica. Asked for no straw in our smoothies and commented that we had our own. Staff forgot as so automatic!
  3. 8th April 17, yellow. From our driver on Phu Quoc island, Vietnam. He bought us a coconut water in a whole coconut without asking. It came with a straw! This was just after visiting the Bee Farm where they make their own straws from bamboo, which we bought. The irony of this straw was wonderful!
  4. 14th April 17, pink and white strips, bendy. A very local vegetarian restaurant in Hue, Vietnam. The waiter indicated he understood we had our own straws, which we showed him, but he had not.

    4. Vegetarian Restaurant in Hue, Vietnam

  5. 16th April 17, pink and bendy. Welcome drink at hotel in Hanoi. The person checking in before us did not have a straw in their welcome drink so I thought it was safe.

    5. Hotel in Hanoi, Vietnam

     

  6. 30th April 17, black. Already placed in a glass at each place setting for making our own cocktails. At a Bompass & Parr workshop, London.

    6. Bompass & Parr event

     

  7. 21st June 17, clear. Bar / restaurant in central London near City Point, requested no straw at bar but there was a miscommunication between the staff. Forgot to keep the straw in my annoyance.

    7. Bar / restaurant , Central London, UK

  8. 25th June 17, clear x2. Free range chicken shop in Brixton. Total fail we forgot to ask for no straw! Not the staff’s fault.

8. Brixton, London restaurant

9. 6th September 17 – black. Cocktail at a very (otherwise) ethical restaurant. The waitress who took the order and bar staff fulfilled my request, then the waiter who brought me the drink thought the straw had been missed so added it! During zero waste week too, oh the irony. Lead to a great discussion with the staff about why I didn’t want a straw and why I was keeping it.

9. Central London Restaurant 

10. Disposable plastic stick with a metal straw! Cruise Boat.

10. 7th October 17 – Smirnoff Twizzle stick. I don’t normally include other drink disposable bits on this page. The irony of this one was that the boat we were on had replaced all their plastic straws with metal ones BUT still had disposable twizzle sticks!! And the metal straw actually had a built in stirring paddle at the bottom, so the stick was not even functional!

 

11. 16th February 2018 – black thin, short. Vegetarian restaurant in Brighton, got this with our sharing dessert! Asked the waitress and she explained that they had transitioned to paper straws in drinks three weeks ago but these small ones were part of the stock they were still using up.

11. Unexpected straws in a sharing dessert.

1 year of no straws

The public mood, and perception of straws, has certainly changed since I decided to stay no to straws 1 year ago. I certainly did not imagine so many UK chains would change to straws on request. Or that the Association of Licensed Multiple Retailers (ALMR) trade association for 23,000 venues would recommend it’s members move to straws on request with immediate effect. A number of small towns and even London City Airport have gone straw free. There are campaigns on the major petition platforms for straws to not be sold in major supermarkets, and even an out right ban on them altogether.
I have had a number of friends with kids ask me about reusable options, I suggest Boobalou.co.uk for a good range. I have enjoyed some great conversations with restaurant staff about my reusable straws, and the issues of plastic ones. Friends have taken the bamboo straws I have given them around the world. It’s been great hearing about the conversations these have initiated.
Going forward saying no to straws is almost going to be harder. My guard is going to be down with so many places going straws on request and moving to paper. There is still a lot of plastic straw stock to be used up, so beware. I know one bar that has a cellar full!
The fight is not over but it’s certainly come a long way in only 12 months.

This post has been linked to “A Green & Rosie Life” #GoingGreenLinky

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave

SaveSave