Global restaurateur HMSHost has introduced new PHA biodegradable straws from BIOLO in numerous dining venues at U.S. airports across California, Washington, Texas, North Carolina, and Florida.
The partnership with BIOLO, which was secured through HMSHost’s packaging partner Baer & Associates, Inc., marks a significant milestone in HMSHost’s promise to reduce the use of single-use plastic guest packaging in its North American airport operations. In July 2018, HMSHost was the first travel restaurateur to publicly announce the elimination of plastic straws to help address the harmful accumulation of plastics in oceans and landfills. Following the announcement, the company immediately reduced travelers’ unnecessary plastic usage by removing straws from common areas of quick-service restaurants and only offering straws on request in casual dining restaurants. HMSHost also launched a #SkipTheStraw marketing and social media campaign to educate customers on why the company was encouraging customers not to use straws, and the powerful impact it would have on the environment.
HMSHost had previously tested paper straws as replacements for the plastic straws but was not satisfied with the performance. BIOLO compostable straws are made from a renewable plant-based plastic alternative, known as polyhydroxyalkanoate, or PHA, that is TÜV-certified for biodegradation in soil, marine, and freshwater environments, as well as in home and industrial composting settings — breaking down in 180 days or less and leaving behind zero microplastics.
“We are incredibly pleased with not only the quality and durability of BIOLO straws, but also the customer experience. During our testing period, we repeatedly heard from travelers that they couldn’t believe that the sturdy, functional straws they were using weren’t made of plastic,” says Ann Fondersmith, Senior Director of Sustainability, HMSHost. “Through our partnership with BIOLO, HMSHost can deliver on our important commitment to reducing single-use plastics by eliminating plastic straws. Over the course of a year across our North American operations, this will equate to keeping millions of plastic straws out of our environment.”
According to Michael Delano, Product Manager at BIOLO, “We are excited to partner with HMSHost to reduce plastic waste and the impact that we as humans make on the planet. Finding ways to reduce environmental impact while still providing people with guilt-free plastic alternatives that fit the rigorous standards of modern-day life is what the BIOLO brand is all about.”