Amsterdam, 20 June 2018 – IKEA, the Swedish furniture giant, announced new sustainability goals last week. All branches worldwide have to remove all single-use plastic stores and their own restaurants within 1.5 years. This includes products such as straws, plates, cups and bags. Furthermore, the company wants to become truly circular. Ikea’s People & Planet Positive Strategy includes the goal to only sell products that can be repurposed, repaired, reused, resold and recycled by 2030.

The People & Planet Positive Strategy stems from 2012, but has now been fine-tuned and made to be compliant with the global sustainability goals of the United Nations. IKEA states  that they have made great progress since 2012, but that’s ambitious sustainability commitments and rapid action. The adapted strategy will be evaluated every year. Since IKEA can not meet these goals alone, they are involving everyone: staff, suppliers and customers.

Maria Westerbos, director of the Plastic Soup Foundation: “In order to counteract the plastic pollution, the use of plastic has to be drastically reduced. Rapid action is absolutely necessary. We are delighted that IKEA realises this and that they are taking the step that we’ve long been calling for. Apart from the reduction of single-use plastics, we are also strongly urging IKEA to take a serious look at the synthetic fibre loss of many IKEA products. We believe there’s even more to be gained there.”

Amsterdam wants to go strawless! Join us by ditching plastic straws!

Amsterdam, 9 May 2018 – In the 1960s, paper straws in drinks were replaced with plastic ones, turning them into a single-use item that is still haunting us, and it will forever. Alarming numbers of the use of plastic straws worldwide and the obvious and disturbing consequences in the environment make it clear that we need to change our behavior. In Europe we use roughly 36,4 billion straws per year. In the US 500 million straws are being used per day. That is the same as 1.6 straws per person/day. 

However, plastic straws are one of the top 3 most found items in beach and river cleanups in the Netherlands and Belgium. Remember that time you had a soda with a straw 5 years ago? Yes, that straw still exists somewhere in some shape or form.

Sustainable alternatives to plastic straws, such as metal or bamboo straws, are already available. Then, why are we not ditching plastic straws once and for all?

Old plastic drinking straw found in the stomach of a seal in The Netherlands.
Credit: Wageningen University & Research

The movement IamStrawless wants Amsterdam to be the first European city to ditch one-time use plastic straws, and they want it by 2019. After Amsterdam, they want other cities to follow suit. As part of this movement, they are asking individuals and businesses to pledge to stop using plastic straws. Their launching event, Plastic Free G&T weekend, is taking place from 11th – 13th of May, and asks the participating venues to sell their signature gin & tonic without a straw and donate €1 to the IamStrawless campaign. 

Arian Lurie, Founder & Executive Director: “This is a chance to join a movement of global change, one-time plastic straws are just a drop in an ocean of garbage but it is a start. […] In this case, the fact that almost every single person today uses one-time plastic straws is actually a benefit for us because it will help us reach, well, EVERYONE.” 

We want to challenge you to join the IamStrawless campaign and say no to plastic straws. You can start this weekend at the different locations in Amsterdam and you can join or #RefuseSingleUse challenge and skip the straw for at least 30 days.  

Together we can make the world a better place “one cocktail at a time”. Let’s start now!

#RefuseSingleUse #IamStrawless 

Also Read: Are You Ready to Refuse Single Use for planet Earth