Sayonara, straws — a newly designed lid is set to replace you all. 

Back in April last year, KFC began trialling a new “Drinking Lid” to reduce single-use plastics and eliminate the need for straws. After the initial test run at 28 stores, the product was monitored and improved with the help of customer feedback, and now it’s been introduced at all 1,232 stores around the country.

News outlets everywhere lit up to report on the new development, but few if any actually tested it out to see if it was any good. That’s where our reporter Tasuku Egawa stepped in, heading out to his nearest branch, where he placed an order for a Cranberry Lemonade Soda.

▼ The クランベリーレモネードソーダ (“Cranberry Lemonade Soda”) retails for 300 yen (US$1.92).

Upon receiving his order, Tasuku peered inside the bag and saw that the lid on his cup really did look different to the ones he’s used to seeing.

KFC had previously made the switch from plastic to paper in its straws, but with many customers disliking the soggy feel of paper straws, the new Drinking Lid was born. In all honesty, Tasuku was dubious about the lid, because it didn’t look that different to the lids on takeaway coffee cups, but with KFC insisting that it was a new innovation, he decided to push his presumptions aside and give it a try.

Taking a closer look, it seemed that the lid actually curved up towards the spout, suggesting there had been careful planning in its design.

Peeling off the lid for an even closer look, Tasuku found that it was designed to be used for all sorts of drinks.

▼ The lid had the words “ティー” (“tea), “コーヒー” (“coffee”) and “その他” (“other”) printed on it.

▼ The spout popped back easily, fitting snugly into the pocket behind it.

The points that impressed Tasuku the most were the spout, which is a “lift-up type” (“リフトアップ式”)…

▼ …and the rim’s large, slanted lip.

The spout seemed larger than usual, so he was cautious when he took a sip, but to his surprise, it was incredibly easy to drink from!

First of all, the lift-up spout helped to direct the flow of liquid straight into his mouth, while the slanted rim underneath felt gentle and snug on Tasuku’s bottom lip, creating a gap-free connection that securely prevented any drips.

After drinking from the lid, Tasuku can confirm that it is indeed a great innovation, and one that he hopes other fast food chains will adopt soon. While naysayers might point out that the lid is still plastic, KFC says it’s thinner than usual so less of it is used in the manufacturing process, and 25 percent of it is made from recycled PET. Either way, it’s a better alternative to plastic straws, but in the end, the future of the lid is ultimately up to customers — the more willing they are to cancel straws in favour of actually drinking from the cup, the more fast food chains will cater to them, which, in the long-run, will be a win-win for everyone involved.

Photos ©SoraNews24 
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