The Straits Times/Asia News Network
Items such as drinking straws, freezer bags and ice cube bags will be removed from Ikea's home furnishing range by Jan 1, 2020. (IKEA/The Straits Times/-)
In the latest battle in the war against plastic waste, Ikea said on Friday (June 8) that it will stop selling single-use plastic products by Jan 1, 2020, taking items such as plastic straws and freezer bags off the shelves.
The policy was decided at its annual Democratic Design Days event held in Sweden, where Ikea also committed to becoming climate positive - contributing more to the health of the environment than hurting it - by 2030.
The products that will be removed from its home furnishing range include the Sotvatten drinking straws, Fornybar freezer bags, Isiga ice cube bags and Forslutas garbage bags.
Ikea South-east Asia sustainability director Lars Svensson said: "Through our solutions, we hope to see millions more people take little steps at home to save energy, reduce and recycle waste, and conserve water."
Separately, Royal Caribbean Cruises announced on the same day that the 50 ships across all its brands will stop using straws by the end of this year.
The brands are Royal Caribbean International, Celebrity Cruises, Azamara Club Cruises, TUI Cruises and Pullmantur Cruceros.
The cruise giant currently provides straws only on request, and said that once 2019 begins, guests who ask for straws will receive paper ones. Royal Caribbean also plans to tackle the use of other single-use plastics on its ships, such as condiment packets, cups and bags.
Chairman and chief executive of Royal Caribbean Cruises Richard Fain said: "Healthy oceans are vital to the success of our company. For over 25 years, our Save the Waves programme has guided us to reduce, reuse, and recycle everything we can.
"Eliminating single-use plastics is another step in that program."