Continuing the commitment to lower its impact on the environment, Snappy Salads announced that it is now providing guests premium paper straws instead of the traditional—and cheaper—plastic version.
In the U.S. alone, approximately 500,000,000 plastic straws are used each day. Plastic straws rarely are recycled because they clog up the machines that sort plastic. Therefore, plastic straws go into landfills and tributaries, which lead to our oceans.
Plastic straws are among the top 10 debris items in our oceans. Recent findings suggest that 44 percent of all seabirds and 22 percent of marine animals have ingested some type of plastic. In fact, there is so much debris in our oceans that there is now a floating island of plastic in the Pacific.
“Switching to paper straws has been a goal of mine ever since I saw these segments on this monstrous floating trash gyre that’s out of sight, out of mind,” says Chris Dahlander, founder and CEO of Snappy Salads. “Knowing that I was contributing to this, albeit a very small portion, was very motivating to me even though I knew that it would cost more for the paper straws.”
The premium plain white paper straws are sourced from Aardvark Straws of Fort Wayne, Indiana, which is the only U.S. manufacturer of paper straws. Aardvark is the original inventor and patent holder that started making straws in 1888. The straws are made in America, biodegradable, compostable, and 100 percent chlorine-free. Plastic straws are not.
Additionally, the paper-based material used for the straws comes from a sustainably managed forest with chain-of-custody procedures in place. The paraffin wax used to manufacture the drinking straws is GMO-free.
“If you really stop to think about it, the average life span of a straw is about 30 minutes. If it’s made from plastic, it remains in our environment 500 or more years. It will outlive us—and generations to come. This isn’t what I want resting on my shoulders when I go to sleep at night and I hope more companies will have the same commitment,” says Dahlander.