November 27, 2022

Edible straws made by bacteria are better than paper or plastic ones

Edible straws made by bacteria are better than paper or plastic ones
Edible straws made by bacteria are better than paper or plastic onesEdible straws made by bacteria are better than paper or plastic ones

Plastic straws are increasingly being avoided for both health and environmental reasons, but the alternatives all have their downsides – until now

Technology 17 January 2022

Paper straws are not ideal

Benjamin John/Alamy

When it comes to drinking with a straw, there is no perfect option – plastic straws can release microplastics into your beverage, paper straws buckle and bend when they get wet and metal straws can damage your teeth. Now there is a solution: edible straws made by bacteria.

Qing-Fang Guan at the University of Science and Technology of China and his colleagues made straws out of bacterial cellulose, which is similar to the plant-based cellulose used to make paper but with a closer-knit molecular structure. It …