Protea Hotels by Marriott will replace plastic straws with biodegradable straws in all of its hotels across Sub-Saharan Africa.
This eco-conscious shift will become a brand standard across all Protea Hotels by Marriott and Protea Hotels Fire & Ice! by Marriott. The brand recently introduced Vivreau Water at all Protea Hotels by Marriott to limit the use of plastic water bottles.
The announcement comes close on the heels of Marriott International’s announcement to remove disposable plastic straws and plastic stirrers from its more than 6,500 properties across 30 brands around the world. Once fully implemented in one year, the company could eliminate the use of more than 1 billion plastic straws per year and about a quarter billion stirrers.
Because they are small items, the control of where plastic straws end up is difficult. Plastic waste is turning oceans into death pools. A single plastic straw – which might be used for about 15 minutes – will never fully decompose. Biodegradable straws on the other hand are 100% compostable, taking 9-12 weeks to compost. And they are not just waste: they can be reused to feed plants as they’re naturally organic.
Despite the biodegradable straws being a more expensive alternative, Protea Hotels by Marriott has chosen to go this route as it believes this is the right thing to do.
The bio straw selected by the brand is 8mm in thickness, which is larger than the current straws in use. As such, it allows for a range of uses, including being both a straw and a swizzle stick. They are green in colour to give a natural feel and look. The straw is made of polylactic acid (PLA), which is essentially starch from mealie cobs and other plant sources. The brand may introduce other variants in the future.
Some of the other Marriott International Hotels including Cape Town Marriott Hotel Crystal Towers, The Westin Cape Town, African Pride 15 On Orange Hotel, Autograph Collection,African Pride Arabella Hotel & Spa, Autograph Collection, African Pride Irene Country Lodge, Autograph Collection, African Pride Melrose Arch Hotel, Autograph Collection, African Pride Mount Grace Country House & Spa, Autograph Collection, will also join Protea Hotels by Marriott in this drive.