FRESNO, Calif. (KSEE/KGPE) – Starbucks across California will not automatically give customers straws, cutlery or splash sticks unless the customer asks for them, according to an announcement made by the coffee retailer this week.
The new rule will be in place for both drive-thru and inside the stores. It is part of state-wide efforts to reduce the amount of plastic thrown away.
In an email to customers, Starbucks cites California law as the reason why baristas will only provide single-use serveware when requested. The new policy begins June 1.
The law cited by Starbucks relates to an Assembly Bill signed by Gov. Gavin Newsom in October. AB1276 stops any location serving food from providing “any single-use foodware accessory or standard condiment” – unless requested.
If a facility is found to be breaking the law, its first and second violation will result in receiving a notice. Any violation of the law after that could result in a fine of $25 each day the law is being broken – up to a maximum of $300.
There are exceptions written into the legislation, such as if a delivery platform is being used. The law also encourages food facilities to take further actions to reduce waste generated by the single-use products.
The new rule matches a similar rule introduced by California lawmakers in 2018 that aimed to limit the number of straws handed out at California restaurants.
In a statement at the time, then-Gov. Jerry Brown wrote that the single-use convenience has led to disastrous consequences.
“Plastics, in all forms — straws, bottles, packaging, bags, etc. — are choking the planet.”