Ohio Brewpub Says No More Plastic Straws
Beer lovers and environmentalists alike cheered when a Florida craft brewery announced it was working on non-plastic, biodegradable six-pack holders in spring 2016. Now, a Cleveland, Ohio, area brewpub is making headlines for eliminating plastic straws.
While it may seem like a small change, the anti-plastic straw movement is growing worldwide. The average person uses 1.6 straws each day, according to the Ocean Conservancy. The group says, “If 25,000 people pledge to skip the straw we could save 5,000,000 straws—and prevent a lot of them from entering the ocean and possibly harming wildlife.”
Cleveland’s Market Garden Brewery, along with its four sister bars and restaurants, recently decided to join the skip the straw movement. Owner Sam McNulty says adding a plastic straw to every glass of water or soda was a habit for his bar and serving staff — and once he realized the environmental impact, he decided it was time for a change.
“I kayak on [the] Cuyahoga River, see an occasional garbage bag, bottle flow by. It’s amazing how packages we use for seconds end up lasting a lifetime and beyond,” McNulty tells Cleveland 19 News.
Market Garden joins a list of breweries and brewpubs who are chucking the straw, including Vintage Brewing in Madison, Wisconsin. Large companies are also saying no to plastic straws, like Alaska Airlines and the food service company Bon Appetit. The European Union is reviewing a proposed ban on plastics, specifically straws and utensils.
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If you still want a straw at Market Garden Brewery, you aren’t out of luck. McNulty’s team has paper straws on hand.
“Like most things in life, doing things the right way does cost more, but pays off in dividends,” McNulty says.