Amid the backlash, several customers are now requesting plastic lids designed for hot beverages on their cold drinks and boasting about the “ingenious” idea on Twitter.
One user commented on a photograph of them holding a cold McDonald’s beverage covered by a coffee lid: “Hate the @McDonalds paper straw? Thank me later.”
Another posted a similar image with the caption: “My cousin was given this back in Feb by accident by a new McDonald’s worker and I was thinking if you don’t rate a paper straw. Do this? Loool [sic].”
“Much respect to @McDonalds for trying to cut on plastic disposal and use paper straws,” wrote one user.
“Brings back memories when your mates used to dare you to eat a piece of paper.
“So when I next get a drink, I’ll be asking them to use a coffee cup lid for my drink.”
However, others are taking to social media to remind people why the swap has been made.
“Fed up of hearing people moan because McDonald’s have changed their straws to paper. Talk about first world problems,” tweeted one Twitter user.
“Can’t believe people are really copping a strop over McDonald’s having paper straws now??? Get a reusable one if it’s that traumatic for you,” added another.
Last June, the US fast food chain announced it would end the use of plastic straws in all 1,361 branches across the UK after nearly half a million people called for the company to make the change.
The company began phasing out plastic straws last September, with the process to be completed sometime this year, in a bid to cut-down on plastic pollution.
Despite the company’s improved eco-efforts, the move have been criticised, rather than praised, by many customers who have taken umbrage with the structure and texture of the new straws.
Last week, a plastic straw was being offered on eBay for 1,000, aimed at those angered by the paper alternative.
The advert reads: “McDonalds Plastic Straw SUPER RARE. Condition is New.
“Brilliant uncirculated brand new McDonald’s straw. This is soon to become the stuff of legend. Imagine you’re about 50 years older than you are now, telling your grandchildren how you got given plastic straws from McDonald’s and they will look up to you like god!”
The new straws are made of paper derived from certified sustainable sources, according to the company.
In light of the complaints, a spokesperson from McDonald's tells The Independent: "Our suppliers have made us paper straws that last at least 30 minutes in most, if not all liquids.
"They were introduced following customer feedback, and we are pleased to be doing the right thing in removing plastic from our restaurants and taking significant steps to reduce our environmental impact.”
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