Chipotle Needs to Ditch the Plastic!

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Being a college student, Chipotle has become one of my favorite places to grab a quick bite where I know I can trust the food I'm eating. But, I think it's time to make a statement on an issue I stand by...

Chipotle Mexican Grill is a front-runner and trend setter when it come to high-quality food and restaurant standards. They preach about "Food With Integrity" which entails a commitment to wholesome ingredients, non-GMO foods, responsible farming, and locally sourced products. But, why have they chosen to ignore the largest destruction in their whole restaurant? Their plastic straws, lids, and eating utensils. 

According to The Last Plastic Straw, on average, there are 500 million straws discarded into landfills per DAY in the United States alone! Even if Chipotle were to put recycling into place to help with their straw and lid dilemma, according to Residential Waste Systems, straws are made from a certain kind of plastic called polypropylene. While this is a common type of plastic, "...some of the biggest recycling centers that DO accept polypropylene, DO NOT accept plastic straws" due to it's make-up. Recycling plastic straws is nearly impossible.

So, with the dangers of single-use plastic becoming more and more widespread everyday why has it taken a company like Chipotle so long to catch on? Well, according to Food Business NewsChipotle has been taking strides to reduce their production waste by switching to reusable food storage lids, for example; BUT only plans to commit to offer consumer composting and recycling efforts by 2020.

While having these efforts put into place within the next 2 years sounds like a good solution, the reality of the situation is that 2 years, is too long. In 2 years the US can use and discard 350 billion plastic straws in landfills/the environment. With Chipotle being the trend-setter of the food industry that it is, together let's convince them to take a stand against single-use plastic items and inspire other fast-food restaurants to follow! :)