Ever since I embarked on my zero waste journey, I have become increasingly passionate about new eco-friendly businesses and NGOs. They are just are so crucial in order to change the world for the better!
Do not get me wrong, I believe it is essential to not only limit but also to minimize the wrongdoings and damage big corporations like Nestlé or H&M cause, and I like to regularly pester big brands and chains to remind them of their responsibility. However, I also believe that we also need to strengthen pioneers that pave the path towards a new, better economy and future!
I myself have come to focus my own efforts on the latter: businesses that do not only do their best to produce in an eco-friendly and ethical way, but that work hard to push the boundaries. Frankly, this gives me hope and positive energy, while fighting those big corporations does drain me and leave me feeling frustrated.
Besides, I believe that in order to change how our economy works, we need to prove that you do not have to harm any people, animals, or the environment in order to run a successful business!
This is why I am now a brand ambassador for HALM
HALM makes reusable straws from extremely durable glass, strives to become a company with a zero plastic impact, and donates 50% of their profits to organizations dedicated to fighting plastic waste 💪🌍!
What does this mean?
This means that I believe in their straws and, most importantly, what their company stands for and how they do things—or else I wouldn’t have agreed to work with them. So from now on, we are in this fight together.
What’s more, I get the chance to give my input, which means I get to bombard them with all kinds of weird ideas and opinions, but also to share my experience in this field.
I really appreciate that both Hannah and Sebastian, the two founders, have asked me to help them spread awareness first and foremost. So from now on you will also find me talking more about plastic straw pollution in addition to food packaging, single-use cups, and bottled water.
The straws that you will see in my posts will be HALM straws, and you will see me link to them or tag them in those posts. It goes without saying that I will label those posts as “sponsored”, because I do get paid for this partnership and it is important to me that you know that.
Hannah and Sebastian have the great ambition and skills to tackle the problem of single-use plastic straws where it is the most prevalent: in the food industry.
I myself used to wait tables in cafes and also a sports bar, and I hated those plastic straws! I always deliberately “forgot” the straw 😇, so people had to specifically ask for them. Needless to say that this hardly ever happened, except for when it came to cocktails.
I have talked to countless owners and managers of coffee shops, restaurants, and bars about it. “There is no way we can hand out [insert name of a cold beverage here] without a straw!” is what all of them told me. Single-use paper or natural straws were dismissed as too expensive, and reusable options were dismissed because they were afraid that customers would steal them. I was at a loss.
But Hannah and Sebastian managed to come up with a concept nonetheless! They help the owners switch to reusable straws during a three-month transition period, e.g. helping them with integrating reusable straws into the workflow and having an eye on how many straws actually do get stolen.
Why plastic straws? Aren’t there bigger fish to fry?
There definitely are! Food packaging, to-go cups, or the pollution the fashion industry causes, to just name a few off the top of my head. But while those issues receive a lot of attention—as they should—plastic straws go unnoticed.
If you follow my Insta-Stories, you know that I often pick up trash from the streets or on the beach. And guess what? Most of what I pick up are cigarette butts, to-go cups, and yes, also an insane amount of plastic straws 😡!
Yes, plastic straws are small compared to to-go cups. But we tend to underestimate the impact of the small bits and pieces. It is exactly the small items that end up clogging the stomachs or stuck in the throats and nostrils of (sea) birds and marine life. Scientists from Australia’s Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organization estimate that nearly 90% of all sea birds are eating plastic and the rate is growing steadily💔!
You might even have seen this video that went viral a while back:
The ocean might seem too far away to have anything to do with us, unless we litter on a beach. Sadly, this is not the case. As long as a bit of plastic find its way to any body of water, it will ultimately end up in the ocean. (Read “How on earth does all the plastic end up in the ocean“)
In the U.S. alone, 500 million plastic straws are used every day! Simply because we lack the awareness and education to know about the impact of it. Straws are handed out mindlessly left and right. It is crazy if you think about the fact that all you really need is one reusable straw per person per lifetime!
The good news: each and every single one of us can contribute to the solution😁💪🌍! Take the #StopSucking pledge today! Spread the word! Refuse plastic straws!
And always remember: