The zero waste idea and the EU ban on introducing, among others disposable plastic drink tubing for the market has prompted the market to look for alternatives. One of the offers is offered by Eco Value, a social enterprise from Siemianowice Śląskie, which produces tubes from rye straw. Bio straws are more durable than paper ones. The company produces about 1.7 million of them per month, combining pro-ecological production with a social mission. It employs people with disabilities in production.
As Eco Value representatives emphasize, in Poland 3 million plastic pipes are used every day, in the USA – even 500 million. Bio straws can be a fully ecological and environmentally safe option for them. They are disposable and biodegradable, but thanks to their more compact structure, they do not soften like paper straws after being kept in a drink for a long time. Ecological straws require a lot of manual work.
“Biosłomka is a fusion of two values that are very important to us, people implementing this project. The first is ecological value: we wanted to create a product that would be 100% biodegradable and that would come straight from nature, and would not be processed or modified in any way” – explains Katarzyna Dyktyńska, CEO of Eco Value, in an interview with the Newseria Biznes agency. “The second idea that is very important to us is to be socially responsible. Bio-straws are produced by people with various disabilities who, thanks to the possibility of work, can participate more fully in social and professional life. Our observation shows that the opportunity to work is the most effective form of rehabilitation and social and professional reintegration.”
The straws are made of Polish rye from the Świętokrzyskie Voivodeship. Eco Value, which is a non-profit company, is involved in the entire process from straw harvesting to the production of straws. It is present in the harvest, after which rye straw is transported to warehouses and cut into smaller pieces. The company produces about 1.7 million of them per month and boasts that it does it waste-free – the stalks not turned into straws are used as animal feed.