Eva Zimmermann and Matthew P. Meyer are the team behind Stream Straws.
Stream Straws is a local business with a simple mission: to reduce the amount of plastic straws used daily across the globe and to replace them with a reusable and eco-friendly alternative.
We hand-make our glass drinking straws locally in Cape Town. The straws are made out of borosilicate glass, rendering it extremely durable.
We are driven by the plastic pollution issue we all face daily. Since the late '80s, plastic straws have been on the top 10-list of items found on the coast during beach cleanups. With more than 5 million straws used daily in the USA alone, we have decided to take responsibility. We say “no thanks” to plastic straws and “yes please” to a greener alternative.
A big part of what we do is education. We need to create a mind shift in the consumer. To make the connection between where they put their money, like food wrapped in plastic or their smoothies in a takeaway plastic cup, to issues like dying seabirds and the rising levels of toxins in our seafood.
Our approach is to get the community involved and educated through beach cleanups where they are faced with plastic pollution directly. When you see something you love, like a stretch of a beautiful beach full of plastic litter, it's impossible to leave without thinking twice about your own plastic consumption.
On International Coastal Cleanup Day on 17 September, we will be part of Two Oceans Aquarium's cleanup at Soetwater in Kommetjie.
We are also encouraging restaurants who are giving away big numbers of plastic straws without even blinking, to either go straw-free or use an alternative like our glass straws when customers need a straw. The movement away from plastic is growing and already you can go to Sexy Food and Culture Club Cheese on Bree Street in Cape Town and sip on smoothies through glass straws, or to Scheckters Raw in Sea Point and Yama Yoga in Bellville.