Friday, July 31, 2015

Glass Straws - The Quality and Price Difference

Glass straws have gained popularity as a desired reusable straw for reasons of environmental concerns, novelty, beauty, and better taste (vs. plastic, metal, or wood).  With more folks opting for reusable table and drink ware, the desire for "disposable" and single use tableware is decreasing, a good thing for our planet.

GlassDharma created the glass straw industry in 2007 with a mission in mind to create and supply, (on a world wide level) a durable and desirable product that replaces single use plastic products that many people use on a daily basis. The idea that there might be an alternative to the massive single use plastic waste that accumulates on our planet drives the inspiration with thoughts that a ripple effect might occur as awareness develops and more and more people make new choices.
This is the first reason behind the company of GlassDharma. We back this commitment to the environment with donations to environmental groups and promotions such as our annual Earth Day Straw Giveaway (over 5000 free straws were given out in 2015 after the completion of some plastic pollution education!).

The second reason behind the creation of GlassDharma is quality. GlassDharma strives to provide top quality in products as well as provide stellar customer service, with customers being treated in a way that encourages healthy and right living.  From the owners to the staff to the customer, the GlassDharma philosophy is to offer quality products that become a step toward a healthy lifestyle for you and for our planet.

The introduction of glass straws brought up many concerns about what might happen if they should break and whether they could be cleaned properly for reuse. As people tried the GlassDharma product, many "breakage fears" were put to rest and consumers were able to see how easy they were to keep clean. In addition, GlassDharma offers a guarantee of replacement, not because the straw can never break, but because the quality is so durable that it surprises the user. Glass can become a product that outlasts plastic and other materials.  Great care has been taken to create the most durable glass straw designs possible in four ways:
  1. A specially formulated annealing process that reduces stress in the glass
  2. Our straw designs and materials are the most durable in the industry (no Chinese glass or decorations that are easily broken)
  3. Our Quality Control – Our standards are so high that almost all other straws we have seen would not pass the GlassDharma QC department
  4. Our guarantee makes trying these straws risk free for the consumer.  This guarantee can only work if the company maintains longevity and if the product is truly consistent with these claims
As the popularity of GlassDharma straws increased over the years (from 2007 on), many new glass straw manufacturers, glass artists, and hobbyists began offering glass straws as well.  Glass Straw companies began popping up at all corners o the earth.  More glass straws means less plastic in our environment, so GlassDharma views this "competition" in a positive light.  Not all glass straws are created equal, however, and many levels of quality are sold for various price points.
Some things to consider when choosing where you buy your glass straws:
  • GlassDharma has plastic-free display boxes and packaging and we would never charge extra for a boxed straw.
  • GlassDharma’s shipping materials are all plastic free. (no peanuts , bubble wrap, or plastic tape. Most competitors are using bubble wrap and/or polystyrene packing peanuts and almost all use plastic tape.
  • As mentioned above related to durability, GlassDharma anneals every straw that leaves our factory. Keep in mind that not all annealing processes are alike and some glass straws are not annealed at all.  The GlassDharma straw designs remain streamlined to ensure durability for a lasting, reusable product
  • GlassDharma uses a 2-step process in the etching of our straws.  This etching plus sandblasting process ensures the etching will be clear and noticeable on the glass
  • As mentioned above, GlassDharma has the most stringent QC process with constant scrutiny applied to all products that ship from our facility
  • GlassDharma sells products only made in the US. If we can source our raw materials in the US we do. Some raw materials are only sourced overseas (never from China), but all production occurs in the US. For more information – please inquire by email:  
  • GlassDharma carries only custom-made stainless steel brushes. Just like glass straws, not all cleaning brushes are created equal.  You do not want to buy a straw cleaning brush that rusts! More about our cleaning brushes here.

Finally, as consumers all have the right and the privilege of making choices with every dollar we spend to maintain or deny sustainability and planet care. How will you "vote" with your cash in the years to come?

Photos courtesy of  Kuse Productos Ecologics
Supplier of GlassDharma Straws to Colombia

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