Reusable straws are a big deal at the moment, with hundreds of thousands of people (and restaurants, well done Ocean Basket!) across the globe choosing to boycott one-use plastic straws by replacing them with a reusable straw they take with them everywhere instead.
Choosing a reusable straw not only stops millions of these buggers landing on our beaches, streets and numerous other places, but it means fewer are ending up in our oceans, saving sea life.
Jeanne and I went on a beach clean up at our local beach, Blouberg Beach this past weekend, and the number of straws we found sticking out of the sand and being washed up on the beach right in front of our eyes was astonishing.
Other things we found a lot of:
- Cigarette butts – fucking disgusting, guys,
- SO much polystyrene,
- Lollipop sticks and sweetie wrapers.
Spent an hour of our morning at our friend’s first beach clean up. It’s amazing what you find/pick up/see while doing beach clean ups, and it breaks my heart that humans think it’s okay to destroy some of nature’s most beautiful creations. 😭 but, we will keep on trying to make a difference, and you should too! What we found a lot of: •stompies/cigarettes •straws •polystyrene •lollipop sticks •string/gut. 🏖 #beach #blouberg #cleanup #remax #sablogger #makeadifference #litter #recycle #winter #wintermorning #tablemountain #capetown #mothercity #southafrica #saturday #weekend #volunteer #volunteering #nature #outdoors #mothernature
- Fact 1: Plastics are the most common element found in the ocean today. Plastic, in particular, is harmful to the environment as it does not break down easily and is often mistaken as food by marine animals.
- Fact 2: According to a study done by the University of Georgia, 18 billion pounds of plastic trash winds up in our oceans each year. To put that in perspective, it’s enough trash to cover every foot of coastline around the world with five full trash bags of plastic…compounding every year.
- Fact 3: The 5 most common items found in coastal cleanups around the world are all single-use plastics. They are: plastic cigarette butts, food wrappers, plastic beverage bottles, plastic bottle caps, and plastic straws and drink stirrers.
- Fact 4: There are 25 trillion pieces of plastic debris in the ocean. Of that, 269,000 tons float on the surface, while some four billion plastic microfibers per square kilometre litter the deep sea.
- Fact 5: 80% of trash in the ocean is from land-based sources, including individuals, industry and improper waste management/infrastructure. Only 20% is the result of ocean-based sources, such as the fishing, shipping, and cruise ship industries.
You can find more of facts, here.
Reusable straws are made from a number of different materials, come in a couple of shapes, and they can be found across the web from multiple online retailers for pretty reasonable prices.
In an attempt to get everyone (and their mama) reading this to join the reusable straw movement with us, here is where you can buy your very own:
(Note: the info used below was taken off each brand’s website, however, I have adapted it a little here and there).
Handmade and biodegradable, The Bamboo project’s straws are the perfect accompaniment for any drink.
Not only do these straws look great, most importantly, they are good for the environment.
Bamboo is an extremely strong natural material and, with the proper care, these straws can be used multiple times without being replaced.
*Be advised that this is a 100% natural and handmade product, therefore differentiation in product thickness, colour and lifespan may occur.
Available in packs of 4, the ForEVA straw is the first of its kind to be commercially available in SA.
The stainless steel straw revolution has a number of advantages (besides making any drink taste better), including:
- Environmentally Friendly
- Classy look
- Ideal for Any Occasion
- Easy to clean
- Increased Tensile Strength
- Retains drink temperature longer
- Safe for kids
- Perfect for Travel
- BPA Free
- Made from 18/8 Stainless Steel
- Dishwasher Friendly for easy cleaning
All of Glass Skunks pieces are handmade out of borosilicate glass, which is the strongest type of glass that can be used for glass straws.
Glass Skunks super fancy glass is so amazing it can withstand temperatures below freezing and up to 1500 degrees Fahrenheit, and can be washed in the dishwasher, too.
Toxic-free and safe, you can be 100% sure there’s nothing nasty inside this glass.
Made out of borosilicate glass, too, The Stream straw is extremely durable. Suitable for all ages, resistant to thermal shock and dishwasher friendly, each straw comes with a lifetime guarantee!
The straws are handcrafted right here in SA by their passionate team, with each step of the process done with the utmost attention to detail, meaning each straw has its own unique look.
All retail straws come with a lifetime guarantee against breakage by regular use. Additionally, Stream straw are so confident that their straws are durable enough to safely handle daily use, that should your straw break or crack while using it, they will issue you a credit equal to your broken straw to use in their webshop.
RESTRAW’s products have been carefully conceptualised and crafted to be as environmentally friendly as possible, from the start to finish. Manufactured and branded locally, each one is handcrafted with the utmost care.
RESTRAW partnered with an incredible company called Upcycle (www.upcycle.co.za) to make their beautiful hemp sleeves (it’s sustainable, cruelty-free, antibacterial and antifungal), and they teach and empower people in various communities to make a living from the resources they have at hand.
What’s more, RESTRAW’s packaging is made from recycled and biodegradable material and they have requested that their suppliers stay away from using plastic for any of our products and rather use paper if necessary. So freaking amazing!
All of these amazing reusable straw options will help you to change the planet and your mindset. It’s important to completely rethink the way we use products and, if possible, rather choose things that 1. do not need packaging and, 2. if there is a need for packaging, ensure it is reusable or can be recycled.
Changing our mindset will be hard. We are so used to doing and using certain things, so it will take time. But it’s important to know that, even doing something as small as opting to use a reusable straw at a restaurant, does make a huge difference!
It all starts with us! So let’s choose to change, let’s choose to make a difference.