How Paying Attention to Straws is Changing the Environment

“An environmental turning point is lurking in your drink,” says CNBC, and they’re right. The straws you use to sip your beverage of choice at your favorite restaurant could be the next big point of contention in the war on waste.

Seattle, Fort Meyers, and Malibu have already banned plastic drinking straws, and fast food giant McDonald’s plans to eliminate plastic straws at its 1,300 locations in the United Kingdom.

But why the controversy at all?

Plastic straws can be harmful to the environment—but there is a solution

Consider how long you use a typical drinking straw. Even if you linger over your meal, chances are your straw won’t be in use for more than an hour at most. But the plastic used in your straw will never decompose. Even if it makes up just a small portion of the plastic used once and thrown away, it’s still contributing to the growing problem of pollution and waste.

The solution to the waste of plastic straws is simple and has actually been around as long as straws themselves: paper straws. These lightweight, often colorful straws were once common in malt shops and restaurants but fell out of favor as plastic straws became more common. Now, these straws are making a comeback for one simple reason: they decompose completely. Unlike plastic, paper straws will eventually break down in a landfill, resulting in a much smaller impact on the environment.

It may seem like a small thing, but this is a huge long-term benefit. Even though plastic straws may be small, they’re used in huge numbers every day and that plastic adds up. Paper straws can make a small but significant dent in that total.

How Evans plays a key role in paper straw manufacturing

Adhesive is a critical part of the manufacturing process that makes paper straws possible.

If you look closely at the construction of a paper straw, you’ll notice a spiraled line of paper that makes up the straw’s body, very similar to a paper towel roll. Paper straws are obviously much smaller and lighter than a paper towel tube, but both are held together with a small amount of adhesive along the edge of the paper spiral. Evans has been a key supplier in the manufacture of paper straws since the beginning

As paper straws return to prominence, Evans’ high quality, water-based adhesives will be front and center. The next time you’re sipping a drink on a paper straw, remember the adhesive that makes your environmentally friendly drinking option a possibility.

About Evans

Evans Adhesive helps our customers and the US Food & Beverage industry move toward more environmentally-friendly alternatives to plastics! While many states and companies are looking for sustainable options to replace plastic straws, Evans Adhesive offers successful products for use in paper straw manufacturing to help reduce plastic consumption here in the US.

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