Independent restaurant group Lettuce Entertain You is set to start removing the use of plastic straws across all its restaurants in the US from this autumn.

With this initiative, the restaurant chain joins more than 100 Chicago-based restaurants and bars in the ‘Shedd the Straw’ campaign of Shedd Aquarium.

The company has taken this decision in an effort to reduce its environmental footprint. It plans to use natural alternatives such as paper and hay, as well as biodegradable plastic straws across its 120 restaurants in nine US states.

“Logistically it’s much more difficult than you might think. There’s truly not enough supply.”

Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises president RJ Melman was quoted by the Chicago Tribunal as saying: “There’s always going to be some pushback, but that’s how change happens, right? Hopefully our customers understand that we’re doing what we think is right.

“I’m very sympathetic to [McDonald’s] position. Logistically it’s much more difficult than you might think. There’s truly not enough supply.”

Lettuce currently owns, manages and licences various restaurant brands such as R.J. Grunts, M Burger, Wow Bao and Everest.

Shedd Aquarium started the ‘Shedd the Straw’ campaign to enable restaurants in Chicago to remove single-use plastic straws, as well as raise public awareness of plastic pollution.

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