This photo was taken in April 2015 on my honeymoon. A time when I was “green”, and I probably had not given much thought to the straw in my poolside mojito. It was not long after this that I learnt about the zero waste lifestyle.
A few months later I wanted my own reusable straw, and could not find a single one in all my Google searches, so I ordered one from EcoJarz in the States, and lumped it together with a friends shipment. So many people asked me about them, that I decided to import a batch and sell them on. That was January 2016. It was not long till I needed to order more!
Eventually it was all becoming a bit of admin for me; I did not really want another side business and I did not like the carbon footprint involved in importing. So I supplied the last of them to Faithful to Nature, who were already selling the glass straws from Stream Straws, and to Azikho in Ballito.
Well, that was not that long ago, and you can now buy every type of reusable straw imaginable, pretty much anywhere nationwide. Stainless steel (in a variety of colours), copper, glass, bamboo, reed, paper and silicone. Straws that bend, are short, long, wide for a smoothie, foldable!
It is really incredible to go into shops and see straws for sale at the till points amongst the chocolates and what-not. Take-a-lot, South Africa’s biggest online store, now has a variety of straws to choose from online.
Well done South Africa! Let’s all keep doing our best, and not get bogged down and frustrated about people you see using plastic straws, remember, that was all of us once. The best way to make change, is to happily get on with our own thing, without judging others, and let them decide for themselves. Each to their own journey at their own pace.
Feel free to download the image below and share it across social media, it has already down the rounds when I first sent it out in this post encouraging people to educate each other and restaurant owners about the problem with straws.
This is a rather well visited post of reusable straws in South Africa from August 2017, listing where you could get straws. There are an absolute ton more places these days. If you know of a place that I have not included, let me know in the comments below.