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August 08, 2018
Hi fellow eco-warriors!
This week we thought we would give you all an update on how our Short Straw Campaign went. we have been blown away at the level of support we have received for the short straw campaign. What started as a small idea hatched over a couple glasses of wine, late at night as we were packing orders, morphed into an initiative that is removing up to 1.5 million single use plastic straws from the waste stream on an annual basis going forward.
For those of you who are new to the Short Straw Campaign, a little background information: throughout July we were giving away 100 free stainless steel Kappi reusable straws to any cafe that signed up and pledged to stop using single use plastic straws in their venues. Alongside the hundred free stainless steel reusable straws, venues also received a retail pack of 40 Kappi straws to sell at point of sale. One-hundred percent of the proceeds went towards funding the purchase of more straws for future participating venues. It was a pay-it-forward kind of model.
Along the way we have received incredible attention from media outlets and eco bloggers - being featured in online publications such as the Urban List, Ethical Made Easy and Eco Warrior Princess to name just a few. This coverage helped immensely in getting the word out there and as a result we received enquiries from all over the world, with our Short Straw Kits being delivered to cafes as far away as Canada. It’s truly humbling and a great reminder of the awesome little community we’ve managed to build here at Kappi.
And so the results are in! Fourteen venues in total signed up to the campaign. Based on conservative estimates of 100,000 straws being used per year per busy cafe, that yields almost 1.5 million plastic straws being removed from the waste stream on a yearly basis. 1.5 MILLION! And our stainless steel reusable straws are designed to last - we have been using and abusing our set on a daily basis now for over a year - and they still look new! Below is a list of the cafes who jumped on board the Short Straw Campaign and are putting our Kappi reusable straws to good use. Please show them your support - we think they’re awesome and we know you will too:
Now here at Kappi HQ, we feel like we need to address the elephant in the room. Single-use plastic straws have been copping a hammering on social media lately with Plastic Free July and the incredible engagement it received. However, we’re here to tell you that we won’t save the world, or unsuspecting wildlife, by just avoiding plastic straws.
There have been many critics on social media this last month who have pointed out this fact. These critics have argued that single-use plastic straws are only a fraction of the problem. That avoiding single-use straws is easy. That in doing so, people feel good about their contribution to reducing the waste epidemic and continue on without actually making changes as a consumer - a sort of green-washing if you will.
We believe these critics are both right and wrong. Ditching plastic straws is easy. But that’s why the focus on straws is so powerful - it makes reducing plastic consumption accessible to the masses. In doing so, it starts to change the mindset of consumers. That conscious act of asking for no straw isn’t isolated to the cafe. When people leave the venue, they’ve taken that first step towards a more conscious consumption of single-use plastic goods. That small act of asking for no straw starts to extend into their everyday life where they can begin to question their unnecessary plastic-use on a daily basis. We’ve seen the change first-hand. Amongst friends and family, checkout guys/gals, supportive waitstaff and awesome bartenders at our local haunts - society seems to be undergoing a mindset shift for the better.
So, to all the critics out there we say - avoiding straws isn’t the solution, but it’s a start. A great start.
Thank you again for all your support for the Short Straw Campaign. In all we had thousands of cafe nominations from you lovely people and we couldn’t be more grateful for the engagement. We’ve got some awesome ideas for 2019’s Plastic Free July that we’re starting to work on already. However, for those of you who can’t wait a whole year, fear not, we’ve got some cool things brewing at Kappi HQ on the social enterprise side of things. Stay tuned for updates!
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