Red Lobster customers claim restaurant is hypocrite for ocean-saving straw program

@blondeicedcoffee/TikTok Brett Hondow/ShutterStock (Licensed)

‘Shout out to all the sea animals we saved tonight’: Red Lobster customers claim restaurant is hypocritical for ocean-saving straw program

‘I mean, it’s the thought that counts.’


Tangie Mitchell


Posted on Jan 6, 2024   Updated on Jan 6, 2024, 7:23 am CST

In what can only be described as satire, a viral TikToker mocks Red Lobster’s “save the ocean,” by-request-only straw policy. 

Content creator Ella (@blondeicedcoffee) shares the video of a night out at the seafood restaurant and wastes no time poking fun at what seems to her to be an ironic and hypocritical campaign. 

“Shout out to Red Lobster for not giving out plastic straws to save the sea animals,” the voiceover in the video says, the camera panning the front of the restaurant.

Ella then highlights a small excerpt from Red Lobster’s drink menu which reads, “Want a straw? Just Ask! We are providing straws only upon request to help reduce our use and impact on our oceans.” 

“Thinking of all the sea creatures we saved tonight,” the audio quips again as clips show Ella and another dinner guest eating crab legs and shrimp alfredo.

“Save the fishes,” the voice says a final time as the video ends.

The TikTok has received over 7 million views as of Saturday morning.


red lobster is so real for this💪🦞✨🥰 #redlobster #unlimitedseafood #unlimitedshrimp #shrimpfest #redlobstercheddarbiscuits #seafood #savetheturtles #plasticstraws #paperstraws #nostraws #datenight #savetheocean #vegan #vegitarian #lol #satire #comedy #jokes #kidding #funny #seafoodlover #haha #memes #canadian #lobster #crab #environmentallyfriendly #straw

♬ My Love Mine All Mine – Mitski

“My Red Lobster has plastic straws anyway,” one user shared in the comments. “Double kill,” Ella replied.

“I meannn,” a second viewer began, “It’s the thought that counts.” 

“The Red Lobster near me did paper [straws], then switched to the biodegradable ones that look and feel like plastic,” a third user revealed.

This shift would certainly be consistent with Red Lobster’s commitment to eliminate plastic straws from their restaurants and switch to more environmentally friendly straw products, a campaign they first announced in 2018.

Regarding this goal, Red Lobster also provides the following statement on their FAQ page:

“As part of our Seafood with Standards commitments, we want to do everything we can to help protect and preserve our oceans and marine life so there is seafood to enjoy for generations. Ocean plastics have recently become an area of focus, so this an important step toward reducing the impact plastics are having on our oceans.”

The restaurant chain also has plans to address their use of other single-use plastic products, expanding their use of alternative “eco-friendly straws,” switching to paper to-go bags instead of plastic, and implementing new ways to reduce the use of plastic utensils with their to-go packaging. 

The Daily Dot has reached out to Red Lobster via email and to Ella via Instagram message.

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*First Published: Jan 6, 2024, 9:00 am CST