IKEA unveils its ‘Last Straw’ to inspire the nation to live more sustainably

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IKEA UK and Ireland today unveils its ‘Last Straw’, to inspire the nation to take small steps which have a positive impact on the planet. IKEA has immortalised its ‘Last Straw’ in an installation at the Design Museum in London, to symbolise the end of an era of single-use plastics.

The campaign coincides with the week (w/c 1st October 2018) that IKEA will no longer serve or sell single-use plastic straws in any of its UK and Ireland stores, restaurants and bistros.

As a call to action for broader systemic change, IKEA’s ‘Last Straw’ is part of the company’s global commitment to inspire and enable more than one billion people to live a better everyday life within the limits of the planet. This is the first of many milestones in the retailer’s journey to removing all single-use plastic products from its range globally by 2020* and to becoming a truly circular business.

“Plastic straws have become such an important emblem for change when it comes to single-use plastic, but this campaign is not just about straws” said Hege Sæbjørnsen, country sustainability manager, IKEA UK and Ireland. “We want to harness people’s energy behind ditching single-use plastic straws and disposables to draw attention to the thousands of everyday changes we can all make to have a big impact on the planet.”

On display in the Design Museum from today until Saturday 6 October, IKEA’s ‘Last Straw’ exhibit acts as a stark reminder of our collective responsibility to live within the means of the planet and to strive for zero waste lifestyles.

The Last Straw follows IKEA’s recently updated People and Planet Positive strategy, which outlines the company’s commitments to tackle unsustainable consumption, climate change and growing inequality by 2030. This includes the aim to transform into a fully circular business, for all products and packaging materials to be created from renewable and/or recycled materials and be powered by 100% renewable energy.

In the UK and Ireland, IKEA has already demonstrated how it empowers people to take everyday actions that have a positive impact on people and the planet. Through its unique Live LAGOM programme**, the retailer has collaborated with customers, co-workers and partners for the past three years to inspire them with small and affordable lifestyle changes. This includes offering products, workshops, skills and advice to save energy and water, reduce waste, grow your own food and promote a healthy lifestyle.

Hege concluded, “As a global company, we have a responsibility and opportunity to take the lead and play our part in the areas where we can make a real difference. We hope to use the momentum behind the ‘Last Straw’ to continue the conversation around the complex issue of plastic waste pollution and work together with our co-workers, customers, and other key stakeholders to create a more sustainable life – today and for generations to come.”

Supporting its customers on the journey to live a more healthy and sustainable life at home, IKEA already offers and innovates in a number of sustainable products and materials. These include KUNGSBACKA kitchen fronts made from recycled PET bottles and wood, BEHÅLLARE refillable water bottles as well as TOMAT spray bottles and SKRUTT desk pads, which are made from recycled plastic packaging. This is supported by 98% of the packaging used for IKEA products being made from renewable, recyclable or recycled materials.

IKEA is calling on the nation to join the ‘Last Straw’ campaign to ensure it has a lasting impact on the planet, encouraging people to share the small everyday steps they are taking to live a more sustainable life, using the hashtags #IKEALastStraw and #LiveLAGOM.