Starbucks announces move to ditch plastic straws by 2020

The firm is aiming to ban the use of plastic straws by 2020 (Philip Toscano/PA) Credit: PA Archive/PA Images

Starbucks is to ban plastic straws from all of of its stores worldwide in less than two years.

The company becomes the largest food and drink company operating globally to do so, citing the environmental threat to oceans.

Starbucks said it will make a strawless lid available at 8,000 stores in the US and Canada for certain drinks.

The firm estimates the switch will eliminate more than one billion plastic straws a year.

The company’s announcement comes a week after its US hometown, Seattle, banned single-use plastic straws and utensils at businesses that sell food or drinks in the city.

Starbucks said cold beverages in which a straw is typically included make up 50% of the drinks its sells, up from just 37% five years ago.