In another significant development for the Final Straw campaign, Waitrose has told Kate Forbes MSP that it will banish all plastic straws by September.

It comes days after Asda pledged similar action, as public pressure intensifies on supermarket chains to step up the fight against the scourge of plastic pollution.

In her speech in the Holyrood chamber yesterday (7 February), Ms Forbes also paid tributes to the 11 local authorities across Scotland who are supporting the aims of her campaign, as well as the many public bodies – such as National Museums Scotland, the ScotRail Alliance and the Scottish Parliament – who have all committed to taking action.

Ms Forbes has now pledged to turn the focus of her campaign onto private companies, such as bars, cafes, fast food outlets and restaurants.

Kate Forbes MSP said:  “Yesterday, I turned the focus of my Final Straw campaign to private bodies.

“A lot of responsibility is put on customers to say no to plastic straws and yet it would be a lot easier if retailers offered alternatives to plastic straws.

“This would give customers real choice and make it easier to decline plastic straws.

“I am absolutely delighted that Waitrose have responded to my letter so quickly to confirm they are pledging to stop stocking plastic straws as of September.

“This is great news and it shows how quickly the campaign is spreading.

“The MSP for Skye, Lochaber and Badenoch added: “It is very important that cheap, flexible and robust compostable straws are provided instead so that those with disabilities or who depend on straws.

“There is a lot of progress in terms of developing alternatives like Vegware and its important that compostable alternative straws are always available.”