Milo Cress is a boy from Burlington, VT, who wanted to reduce and possibly eliminate the use of plastic disposable straws in restaurants. So in 2011, at the age of 9, he founded the Be Straw-Free project, which focuses on building awareness about plastic waste and its impact on the environment. Since then, Milo has visited local and international cities around the world, urging restaurant owners to adopt his “Offer First” policy, where straws would be offered first rather than being included automatically with served beverages.
The project has attracted the attention of The National Restaurant Association and restaurants across the states of Vermont, Colorado, Illinois and Maine (to name a few!) have pledged to use fewer straws. By participating in regional, national and international press and environmental events, Milo is spreading the word in over 30 countries including Malaysia, Canada and South Korea. As he says, “I’m not out to ban plastic straws. Just cut back on them. Way back, if possible.”