At Dunkin’, one of the chain’s top priorities is to drive positive change for customers, communities, and the environment. In recent months, guests have witnessed the brand hit several key sustainability milestones, including replacing foam cups with paper cups in 100% of our stores globally and reaching our goal of 500 DD Green Achievement restaurants ahead of schedule, while setting new commitments like transitioning from plastic to wooden stir sticks at all Dunkin’ U.S. restaurants by mid-2021.
Dunkin’s shared the next step in its work toward finding long-term Wednesday, environmentally friendly alternatives to single-use plastic packaging. As of today, about 250 Dunkin’ restaurants in select markets throughout the U.S. have begun testing a new biodegradable straw.
Visitors enjoying a cold Dunkin’ beverage at these stores will notice that the new straw most definitely stands out, with a light blue color that beautifully complements our iconic pink and orange. But as good as it may look in your iced coffee, it’s the environmental benefits of the straw that make the most essential and exciting difference.
The straws are made with PHA, a material created by the fermentation of canola oil. And while the straws have the same look and feel as traditional plastic, the PHA material is both marine and soil biodegradable, as well as home and industrial compostable, creating significant environmental advantages over plastic.
These straws are certified by TUV Austria, the premier independent, certifying body of the European Union recognized for its rigorous standards for biodegradable products. The straws are also certified for industrial compostability by the Biodegradable Products Institute (BPI), which is a globally recognized certification, education, and advocacy organization that supports a shift to the circular economy.
Dunkin’ will continue to evaluate and test all available alternatives until we believe we have found the optimal solution based on performance, environmental impacts, quality, commercial viability, and cost. Dunkin’ is on a journey of transformation, and we are driven by an obligation to look at ways we can be better in the areas that matter most. Testing these straws is but one way we are continuing our commitment to expand our sustainability efforts into new areas, and evaluate alternatives that may reduce environmental impacts while meeting the expectations our guests and our franchisees.