Starbucks to Eliminate Plastic Straws From All Stores by 2020

Enlarge ImageIt's the lid heard around the world.                  Starbucks

Swedish furniture giant IKEA recently announced that it will stop selling single-use plastic products at all its stores globally by 2020.

Starbucks pledged to remove plastic straws from more than 28,000 stores by providing two types of straw alternatives: recyclable strawless lids and an alternative-material straw option for beverages like Frappuccinos. Seattle's ban on plastic straws and utensils went into effect last week.

The company says the move when fully implemented could mean a billion fewer plastic straws across its stores each year.

Wes Knopp, the owner of Lone Light Coffee, said, "I think a majority of people would not get a plastic straw if they weren't provided with one automatically".

"Starbucks has designed, developed and manufactured a strawless lid, which will become the standard for all iced coffee, tea and espresso beverages", the company said in a news release.

The company said new lids will be rolled out at locations in North America this year and next, followed by Europe and the rest of the world. Oakland and Berkeley, California, and other cities have also banned the use of disposable straws.

McDonald's recently said it would switch to paper straws in the United Kingdom and Ireland by next year, and test alternatives to plastic straws in some US locations.

WATCH: Plastic straw ban?

"This is a significant milestone to achieve our global aspiration of sustainable coffee, served to our customers in more sustainable ways", Kevin Johnson, president and chief executive of Starbucks, said in a statement.

Starbucks will start the transition away from plastic straws in Seattle and in Vancouver in the fall, before launching a phased rollout in the U.S.in its fiscal 2019.

The UK government said that 1 million birds and more than 100,000 sea mammals die each year from eating and getting tangled in plastic waste.

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