PLEASANTON (KPIX) – Starbucks customers will have to figure how to consume their favorite java drink without a straw.
The mega-giant coffee franchise announced it is planning to phase out use of their signature green plastic straws within the next few years.
Albert Liao from San Ramon stopped by the Starbucks in Pleasanton on Monday, for his drink of choice: The Java Chip Cappuccino.
What if he didn’t have a straw and had to drink it out of a sippy cup?
“It would be kind of inconvenient actually,” said Liao.
There’s no denying it, Starbucks aficionados aren’t much for change.
“You know a lot of people have to have that straw thing going on,” says Laura Watanabe from Pleasanton. “Especially if you are having a Frappuccino, or a tall slushy. ”
But when it comes to the environment, most see the value in the coffee maker switching from plastic straws, to paper or compostable plastic.
“Yea, I wouldn’t have a problem with that,” says Moni Taylor of San Leandro, as just as long as they make her special drink.
“Exactly! Caramel Frappes Grande… extra whip cream,” she says.
The move will eliminate more than 1 billion plastic straws per year from Starbucks stores. Starbucks is also going to use recyclable, strawless lids — a sippy cup of sorts.
Some of the cold drinks are already strawless. Seattle, the Starbucks headquarters, was the first city to take action on a plastic straw ban July 1.
The chain joins a growing number of companies making similar pledges.
Last month, McDonald’s announced that it would start testing plastic straw alternatives.
Fueling the movement is increased consumer environmentalism and concern about the many straws that end up polluting oceans and waterways.
A viral video in 2015 showed rescuers removing a plastic straw from a sea turtle’s nose in graphic detail. After that, the push to ban plastic straws gained traction.
“They could use cardboard straws which are better for the environment,” says Watanabe. “So yes cut the plastic out I guess.”
The plan is to phase out the green straws nationwide in a year, and then, worldwide.