All 84 KFC outlets to stop providing plastic straws and lids for drinks

The move will save an estimated 17.9 tonnes of single-use plastics in a year, KFC said. PHOTO: SHIN MIN DAILY NEWS

SINGAPORE - Fast-food chain KFC will no longer provide plastic straws or use plastic lids for drinks when customers dine at its 84 outlets here from June 20, in an initiative to go green.

The move will save an estimated 17.9 tonnes of single-use plastics in a year, it announced on Monday (June 18).

KFC will also review and introduce the use of more biodegradable packaging, it added.

"We acknowledge the strain that single-use plastics put on our environment and are taking steps to do our part in endeavouring a change," said its general manager Lynette Lee.

"We recognise that every little bit counts and are proud to be the first fast-food restaurant in Singapore to champion this movement, one straw at a time," she added in the statement.

However, plastic lids will still be used for takeaways.

The move has earned KFC praise from environment-conscious Singaporeans, including Singapore Youth for Climate Action member Pamela Low.

Ms Low told The Straits Times that while the announcement was "unexpected", she was happy to hear that KFC is taking steps to cut down its use of plastic.

"I'm happy that KFC didn't just stop with plastic straws, but went further to stop using plastic lids as well," said the 22-year-old undergraduate.

KFC is the latest business to stop using plastic disposables at its outlets, after six hotels pledged to stop using single-use plastic straws, stirrers, cutlery, toiletry bottles and plastic bags on June 1.

At least one foodcourt has also gone plastic straw-free, according to a Straits Times report in April.

The Koufu food court at Singapore Management University stopped using plastic straws and has introduced biodegradable takeaway packaging as well as reusable utensils.

Koufu's chief development officer David Yang said it will monitor the "overall response" before deciding whether to further the intiative to its other outlets.

McDonald's told The Straits Times that it will be testing "straw alternatives" in selected countries.

"We will learn from these tests around the world to develop solutions that are feasible and scalable for us in Singapore," it said.

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