Pulp and paper products manufacturer Stora Enso and Finnish biomaterials start-up Sulapac have launched a new biodegradable straw.

The renewable and biodegradable straw will help to address the global plastic waste issue.

The new straw was developed for brands and consumers who are seeking eco-friendly solutions.

Based on Sulapac’s patent-pending material innovation, the straw is made of renewable materials such as wood and plant-based binders.

Described as microplastic-free by Sulapac, the straw is fully biodegradable in different environments and is compatible with the existing waste systems.

The material can be recycled through industrial composting. The companies have produced the straws using machinery that was originally designed for plastic straw manufacturing.

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Stora Enso business alliances head Marcus Dehlin said: “Billions of plastic straws are produced and used every week, creating harmful waste that often ends up in the sea.

“This renewable and biodegradable material can replace fossil-based materials and help combat plastic waste. Our cooperation with Sulapac allows us to explore new types of innovative and scalable materials and widen our offering of renewable solutions.

Finnair’s lounges in Helsinki were the first to use the straw as an alternative to their plastic and paper straws. Food delivery platform Wolt, the alcoholic beverage company Altia, hotel St George and vegan café Kippo are among the customers signed up for the new straw.

Consumers will be able to purchase the straws through online store Biofutura and online retailer Verkkokauppa next month.

The product will be launched in phases. It will be first released in Europe and then launched globally.