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TD Place Says Goodbye to Plastic Straws

June 19, 2019 - Ontario Hockey League (OHL) - Ottawa 67's News Release

OTTAWA - The Ottawa REDBLACKS of the CFL and TD Place today announced that Ottawa's downtown stadium/arena complex is eliminating the use of plastic straws effective this Thursday when the REDBLACKS host the Saskatchewan Roughriders. The decision was made to support worldwide efforts to reduce the use of straws and other single-use plastics to protect our oceans from plastics contamination.

"We'd proud to be part of this movement along with our food and beverage service partner, Levy," said Mark Goudie, President and CEO of OSEG, the firm that owns the REDBLACKS and operates TD Place. "Levy has taken a leadership role in transitioning away from plastic straws at TD Place and all its facilities across North America, and we're thankful to them for their commitment to social responsibility."

In the United States alone, over 500 million plastic straws are used and discarded every day. One study published earlier this year estimated as many as 8.3 billion plastic straws pollute the world's beaches.

"Plastic straws are one of the top five contributors to plastic contamination in our oceans," said Ottawa Capital Ward City Councillor Shawn Menard. "They represent a global problem that will continue to worsen unless governments take action to eliminate their use. I'm happy to see TD Place and OSEG moving in this direction and am hopeful that the city will take a leadership role along with them to phase out more single-use plastics in our city".

Several other plastic products are being replaced by environmentally friendly alternatives at TD Place this year. Fans will notice some food items are now being served on so-called "Bamboo Boats," which are easy to hold, durable, and fully biodegradable. Levy has also adopted the use of corn plastic, which looks and performs like oil-based plastics, but is actually made from processed crops. Corn plastic biodegrades in a matter of months whereas oil-based plastics last for centuries.

"We are researching many other sustainable solutions for stadium food and beverage service," said Glen Methot, Levy's Director of Operations at TD Place. "Many items will be coming online in the near future as supply chains gear-up to match the worldwide demand for more eco-friendly products. And we at Levy in Ottawa are looking forward to the day when we can fully eliminate single-use plastics from our food and beverage service at TD Place."

Drinks that were previously served with straws at TD Place will now feature a strawless lid, commonly referred as a sip cup or sippy cup. Guests may still request straws and if so they'll be issued one made of paper.

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