MGM Resorts International has announced that single-use plastic straws will only be served upon request at company-operated restaurants in the United States.
Both single-use plastic "stir straws" and drinking straws have been removed from casino floors, buffets, cafes, bars and lounges and restaurants. The company tested out the idea first in Las Vegas at ARIA and Mandalay Bay. The response from customers was so positive that it decided to train all of their employees to stop automatically including single-use straws as soon as possible.
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Straws are one of the most common littered items in the U.S., and single-use plastic straws contribute to the rubbish floating in our oceans, severely affecting wildlife. Eight million metric tons of plastic winds up in the oceans each year, and in 2017 plastic straws were the 11th most found ocean trash. One plastic drinking straw can take up to 200 years to breakdown in the environment.
MGM Resorts International owns 19 resorts across the U.S. including three on major waterways—The Borgata, New Jersey; National Harbor, Maryland and Beau Rivage, Mississippi. MGM Resorts believes by working together and reducing plastic straw use, the company can have a positive impact on the environment and oceans.