A campaign has been launched by Bacardí Rum to remove single-use plastic straws from bars, pubs, clubs and restaurants.
Part of a global initiative, the brand has teamed up with non-profit organisation Lonely Whale with the initial aim to rid London of 50 million straws this summer under the banner of #TheFutureDoesntSuck.
Operators will be able to pledge their support at www.thefuturedoesntsuck.org and sign up to be part of Lonely Whale’s “For A Strawless Ocean” programme. It will also allow consumers to support the campaign and track the straws being removed throughout the summer.
To launch the campaign and to raise public awareness of the issue, Bacardí Rum and Lonely Whale commissioned London-based illustrator Sarah Tanat Jones to create a series of illustrations highlighting the damage that single-use plastic straws inflict on the environment.
Her images (pictured) feature single-use plastic straws as weapons of destruction to land a serious message about their impact on the world’s oceans and sea life.
The brand’s team are also eliminating single-use plastic straws from all branded events, music activations and the Bacardí Rum Truck across the UK.
Bacardí will also donate the proceeds of ticket sales from its Casa Bacardí music events throughout June and July in London, Manchester, and Birmingham to the “For A Strawless Ocean” initiative.
Globally, Bacardí and Lonely Whale plan to rid the environment of one billion single-use plastic straws by 2020.
Dune Ives, executive director of Lonely Whale, said: “We’re thrilled to partner with Bacardí, a paramount leader, to attract, surprise, and educate Brits across all demographics and geographies.
“Our goal is to encourage everyone, as Bacardí has already done, to go beyond the straw and work collaboratively to ensure #TheFutureDoesntSuck for generations to come.”
John Burke, chief marketing officer for Bacardi globally, said: “Every day we have an army of people walking in to bars and restaurants around the world. We share this campaign with our partners and people working the front line, those who want to make their voice and support for eliminating single-use plastics heard.
“Just as importantly, we want to raise the table stakes. Our focus for the past two years has been leading the industry charge with our #NoStraws pledge and now is the time to review the larger issue of single-use plastic in the Bacardí supply chain.
“I believe through collaborations like this one with Lonely Whale, where we can bring society and business together, we can make impactful change to ensure #TheFutureDoesntSuck.”
Rick Wilson, senior vice president of corporate responsibility for Bacardí, added: “Engaging our accounts and our consumers in the reduction of single-use plastic is a critical next step in helping to put an end to plastic pollution.
“Single-use plastic items are among the most collected pieces of rubbish in our oceans, and we are urging our consumers to add ‘No plastic straw, please’ to every drink order so together we can make impactful change.”
In 2016, Bacardi Limited announced it would phase out the use of plastic straws at all in-house events around the world. Within one year, it eliminated one million plastic straws from its offices and brand homes.