McDonald's won't be ditching plastic straws anytime soon

Slurping up soda, milkshakes and iced coffees with a plastic straw could become a thing of the past, but not just yet for McDonald's.

As calls for companies to ditch single-use plastic items like straws, cups and bags grow louder, restaurants like McDonald's have to grapple with what it would mean and cost to get rid of plastic items.

"The whole topic of what they call single-use plastics is on everyone's radar," McDonald's CEO Steve Easterbrook told CNBC's "Squawk on the Street" on Monday. "There isn't currently a viable alternative that's nonplastic at the moment, at the scale we need."

McDonald's sees 60 million customers walk through its doors every day, which adds up to a lot of straws, he said.

While Easterbrook doesn't foresee a ban on straws as a likely move for McDonald's in the near future, he said the company is working to increase its recycling capabilities. McDonald's is adhering to the goals set by the Paris accord on climate change and seeking to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 36 percent by 2030.

"Whatever we can do around waste and recycling is a visible part of our business," he said. "We know customers will respond well to any solution we can bring."

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