The Role of Paper Straws in the Coronavirus Pandemic

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We entered into March 2020 as if it were any other month, with intermittent pieces of news about events happening in China that we half paid attention to. By the end of March, nearly all the world was consumed by fear and panic about the same thing: COVID-19. 

The Coronavirus pandemic swiftly and indiscriminately made its way to all four corners of the globe; we were propelled into unprecedented times that changed life as we know it. Now as we come into June with over 7.8 million confirmed cases and 430,000 lives lost, conversations about a return to normality are beginning. It is without doubt though that normality is still some time away. Indeed, we may find it necessary to come to a new understanding of what is meant by ‘normality’ altogether.

One significant impact this pandemic has had in the UK is a postponement of the ban on plastic straws. April 2020 was originally to be the month this ban came into effect; unfortunately, the UK government have now delayed this until October 2020. This decision was made due to worries that as a result of worldwide events, there would not be sufficient supply of paper straws to meet demand. 

We are of course disappointed by the delay here at JBX PaperPak, as we are more than keen to see plastic straws gone for the sake of our oceans and our landscapes. However, we are here to ensure that a lack of demand will not be an issue come October when this ban is now set to come into action. The amount of plastic pollution currently in our oceans is frightening, and it is devastating to all of the vast and various marine ecosystems. We are dedicated in making it our business to greatly reduce the amount of plastic waste that is dumped into the oceans year after year.

On top of the environmental benefits paper straws have to offer, it is also now apparent that paper straws can play a vital role in the prevention of spreading viruses. Anne Roiko, the Associate Professor of Environmental Health at Griffith University in Australia has made the case that using straws in bars and restaurants is an especially effective way of preventing the spread of highly infectious diseases. Seeing as plastic straws are set to be banned in the UK very soon – it will be illegal for companies to sell them and for businesses to offer them to customers – the paper straw will serve as this prohibitive weapon in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic. According to Professor Roiko, the humble paper straw is a key instrument in allowing us to return to some semblance of normal life while keeping a second wave of the Coronavirus at bay.

JBX PaperPak straws are not only high quality, being made from 3-ply premium quality food grade kraft paper, but they are also perfect for performing this protective service against harmful viruses and bacteria. For added peace of mind, our straws can come individually wrapped to offer that extra layer of protection against COVID-19. From the pushback against plastic pollution to worldwide pandemic prevention, JBX is leading the way in the packaging industry.

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Frequently Asked Questions

How are paper straws made?

Our paper straws are made by stacking 3 plies of high-quality food grade kraft paper and putting them through a core-winding machine that applies an adhesive and rolls the straws into shape. They are then cut to size, coated in lacquer to ensure quality and are then ready to be sold.

When did paper straws replace plastic straws?

The UK government initially announced that it was going to introduce a ban on plastic straws in April 2020. However, due to the effect of the worldwide pandemic, the government postponed this to October 2020 out of concern that the supply of paper straws would not be able to meet demand.

What are paper straws made of?

We manufacture our paper straws from high-quality food based kraft paper.