This change comes after orders from the Metz corporate office to enhance their sustainability efforts on campus and to encourage a company wide reduction of plastic waste.
The email sent out by FAMU Metz read:
“As part of our pledge to be environmental stewards, beginning, March 4, plastic straws will no longer be placed in dispensers in our dining locations on campus. Alternate lids that do not require straws will be provided in select locations. Plastic straws will still be available upon request.”
FAMU Metz joins a list of multiple other restaurants and companies that have announced plans to quit plastic straws.
A popular movement known as “The Last Straw” that began in 2018 has started a spike in the number of restaurants eliminating plastic straws. Since Starbucks made the pledge to quit plastic straws last year, other big-name companies such as Jimmy Buffet’s Margaritaville, Walt Disney World and the Royal Caribbean cruise line have all committed to retiring the use of plastic straws by the year 2020.
According to its website, the Plastic Pollution Coalition reported more than 500 million straws being discarded in America each year.
“Plastic straws consistently make the top 10 list of items found by the Ocean Conservancy’s International Coastal Cleanup data.”
Campus dining halls have already started stepping up their earth-friendly game with Starbucks doing away with straws all together. It has introduced a new sippy-cup style lid that allows the customer to drink from the cup without the use of a straw, ultimately hoping to decrease waste in general.
Sophomore Jayla Herring, who works at the Starbucks on campus, said, “Management is still working out some tweaks because the new lids have provided some challenges for some drinks. However, it (the new lids) has created a more green environment and feeling.”
Zubair Shahid, the general manager of FAMU Metz, explained how the change from plastic straws will encourage a more environmentally friendly campus.
“We are hoping to get the conversation started about reducing waste on campus. Hopefully, by the straws not being available, people will give it a little more thought,” he said.
Tia Anderson, who is a third-year doctorate of pharmacy candidate at FAMU, said, “I don’t like straws, they end up harming animals, so I try my very best not to use them. I think the biodegradable ones are awesome.”
For more information on the sustainability efforts taking place within campus dining, visit the FAMU Metz website at www.metzfamu.com.