7-Eleven will stop providing free plastic straws by Sep. 11 in a bid to reduce plastic waste, the convenience store company said on Aug. 12. In addition to the 150 stores located with the business districts that fall under the new regulation, 7-Eleven said that 800 stores in the Taipei area will enforce the ban starting on Aug. 14. All 5,500 stores under the group will comply with the new regulation by Sep. 11.
According to the Environmental Protection Administration (EPA), Taiwan consumers use up to 30 billion plastic straws per year. The EPA has therefore implemented new “restrictions on the use of single-use plastic straws” (禁用塑膠吸管政策), which ban the provision of single-use plastic straws at dine-in facilities in government agencies, educational institutions, department stores, and fast food outlets. The ban went into effect on July 1.
Since that day, 7-Eleven has phased out plastic straws for dine-in services in some stores and switched to drinks with lids or biodegradable straws from certified, environmentally friendly producers.
此外，統一超商旗下關係企業包括統一時代百貨、夢時代購物中心、星巴克、Mister Donut、COLD STONE、Semeur聖娜、21世紀等也紛紛響應減塑政策，即日起逐步改以就口杯、環保材質吸管取代或不提供吸管，期望逐漸改變民眾使用習慣，達到源頭減量的效果。
Besides 7-Eleven, other companies under the Uni-President Enterprises Corporation (統一企業公司), including Uni-President Department Store, Dream Mall, as well as brands such as Starbucks, Mister Donut, COLD STONE, Semeur, and 21 Century, have all joined the effort in reducing plastic straws usage by switching to drinks with lids, recyclable straws, or completely stop providing straws. The goal is to solve Taiwan’s plastic problem by its root and change the public’s reliance on straws.
OK Mart, another major convenience store chain in Taiwan, also expressed their commitment to reduce plastic straw usage. Yet, they will still provide straws at the requested of customers. However, OK Mart explained that they will only provide compostable PLA straws if the stores are located within one of the above-mentioned business areas. ●