A&W Canada first restaurant chain to ban straws

Company says it will eliminate all plastic straws from all restaurants by the end of 2018

  • Jun. 8, 2018 11:30 a.m.

A major restaurant chain in Canada has announced it will no longer be providing plastic straws.

The Canadian version of A&W restaurants says it will eliminate all plastic straws by the end of the year, and will be the first quick-service restaurant chain in North America to make this commitment.

“Reducing waste from landfills is a top priority for A&W and this is one big way that we can make a difference,” says Susan Senecal, A&W Canada’s President and Chief Executive Officer.

“We are proud to make this change, which has been driven by the wishes of our guests, franchisees, and staff.”

You’ll still be able to request a paper straw, which is 100 per cent biodegradable and lasts up to three hours in a drink before it breaks down, and will naturally break down within six months in the environment.

The switch to paper straws is expected to keep 82 million plastic straws out of landfills each year, according to the company.

“Eliminating plastic straws is another big step for us. As we learn more about new tools and sustainable practices, we look forward to more improvements ahead,” said Tyler Pronyk, A&W Canada’s Director of Distribution, Equipment & Packaging.

“By using compostable packaging, real mugs, plates and cutlery, we are diverting millions of single-use packaging from landfills every year.”

A&W is Canada’s second largest hamburger chain with more than 900 locations.

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