The chain has begun testing strawless lids in some US cities as part of a multi-year effort to make its packaging more environmentally friendly.
“These lids help optimize our packaging and eliminate the use of small plastics, just one example of the many solutions we’re reviewing as part of our ongoing global commitment to reduce waste,” a McDonald’s spokesperson said in a statement.
The plastic lids have a pullback tab to prevent the drink from splashing out. To drink from it, customers have to pull the tab back and slot it into a small opening. It’s similar to the “sippy cup” lid at Starbucks that has been in use for the past three years.
Restaurant Business Online, which first noticed the new McDonald’s lids, spotted the new lids being tested in Minneapolis. Customers can still request a straw if needed, the report said.
For the past several years, fast food chains in particular have been trying to figure out ways to reduce waste and go green. In particular, plastic straws can increase ocean pollution and microplastics that can harm marine wildlife.
McDonald’s (MCD) set a goal in 2018 to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from its offices and restaurants by 36% between 2015 and 2030. In 2021, the chain switched out some of its plastic Happy Meal toys for 3-D paper-based toys that customers can put together themselves.