Snappy Salads saves environment from 1.3M plastic straws
Legislators and environmentalists across the country are calling for awareness around plastic straws and the detrimental effects on landfills and coastlines. The no-plastic movement has grown steadily in recent years, gaining momentum following a viral video that featured a sea turtle with a plastic straw wedged in its nose.
As the biggest users of plastic straws, restaurants and bars are considering new ways to serve beverages. The grassroots campaign to phase out plastic straws is growing, but Snappy Salads, an 18-unit fast casual brand, has been working on it for years.
"We took the plunge three years ago and replaced plastic straws with paper ones," Founder Chris Dahlander, said in a press release. "We are always looking for ways that we can lower our impact on the environment and hope others will follow our lead.”
Snappy Salads has since saved the world from 1.3 million plastic straws.
"Snappy Salads is definitely leading the change," said Ryan Conley, of Direct Source, the company that supplies Snappy Salads.
An estimated 500 million plastic straws are used in the U.S. each day, according to Eco-Cycle. On average, plastic straws are used for 20 minutes but can take centuries to break down. Paper straws take around six months to break down.
Besides consumer preference, the higher cost is a reason many businesses haven't made the switch to paper straws.
"Switching from plastic to paper straws did cost more but to us it was about doing the right thing," Dahlander said. "And, if you just want to go without a straw altogether — that's even better for the environment."
Snappy Salads, which received Green Business Certification in 2013, has locations in Houston, Austin and Dallas-Fort Worth.