MONTREAL - In what it's calling a North American first, a Quebec company is test marketing juice boxes with paper straws.

Lassonde Industries Inc., based in Rougemont, Quebec, announced the launch of the 200-ml Oasis apple juice boxes that, for now, will only be available at 10 St-Hubert restaurants and 14 IGA supermarkets in Quebec.

Lassonde developed the product with Tetra Pak, a global packaging company that helped produce similar juice boxes with paper straws in Europe this past summer. The carton and straw of the new juice boxes are both made from paper products and are recyclable.

"In the past few months, we have committed to finding sustainable solutions for making our containers more eco-responsible," said Jean Gattuso, president and CEO of Lassonde. "This initiative is a first step in that direction."

Paper straws, which are biodegradable and believed to be more environmentally friendly than plastic ones, have been growing in popularity in recent years.

St-Hubert stopped offering plastic straws in their restaurants in 2018, and its president, Richard Scofield, said offering the new juice boxes "is a logical next step for us."

Lassonde is also inviting consumers who do test the new juice boxes to give them feedback.