Tran Minh Tien, who lives in a village deep in the Mekong Delta, where wild gray seagrass grows in the swamp, has the initiative to use almond grass as reusable straws instead of plastic straws.
"I thought of grass straws as a temporary replacement for plastic straws to reduce part of the damage that plastic causes to the environment", Tien said.
The type of grass he uses is Lepironia articulata which appear in many provinces in the Mekong Delta. This grass is also commonly used for making handicrafts such as cushioning, making hats, baskets, roofing thatched houses, etc.
The stage to make straws from almond grass takes a lot of effort. Consists of steps collecting grass, cutting into evenly long sections, cleaning, baking in the oven or drying for 2 to 3 sunny days.
The grass straws can be reused for up to six months and they are not harmful to the environment as they are biodegradable.
From this initiative, Mr. Tien started his business of producing straws from grass in 2017. His 3T company currently produces about 3,000 straws per day, making a profit of $ 400 per month. But Mr. Tien shared that he knew the straws made from grass would not be a permanent replacement due to the limited supply of grass in Vietnam.