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As Canada moves towards banning plastic straws this year and many bubble tea shops swap plastic straws for paper, one has to wonder if a better solution exists -- enter Strawmates.
Strawmates founders and friends, Mylene and Meliza, both from the Region of Peel, used to work at bubble tea shops and witnessed many customers having difficulties with paper straws. They realized that even though using paper straws came with good intentions, there needed to be another environmental and sustainable way to drink your boba. The two friends wanted to encourage every bubble tea lover to take action and use their own reusable straws and inspire their friends and loved ones to do the same.
Strawmates is a constructible, portable metal straw perfect for bubble tea lovers who want to make sustainable choices and dislike single-use straws. These straws have been carefully curated with three considerations:
1. Easy poking - Stainless steel straw with a silicone tip and an angled bottom.
2. Easy cleaning - Straw cleaning brush and microfibre.
3. Looks cute - Sturdy and stylish case, with a silicone strap you can attach to your bag.
Strawmates also sells bubble tea kits that come with your own milk tea powder (honeydew, mango or taro), six green tea bags, lactose-free creamer, tapioca and recipe cards with the option to add on your own Strawmate.
Mylene and Meliza have also created a hashtag #strawmateswap that was created to strengthen their community by challenging users to use their straw when going out for milk tea or even a milkshake! The duo shared that they are quite new to starting their business and are constantly learning through reading books and networking with other business owners. They also run their own Instagram page dedicated to showcasing and trying out bubble tea shops across Toronto, confirming they are true bubble tea lovers.
From April 7-14, Strawmates will be donating 10% of all sales to Stop AAPI Hate, a coalition addressing anti-Asian hate amid the pandemic. Strawmates will also be personally donating regardless of the amount raised for this cause. They currently offer Canada-wide and international shipping with hopes to encourage everyone across the world to make more eco-friendly choices. For more information, check out their website.