Frequently Asked Questions Regarding Starbuck$ Campaign
1. Why Starbucks?
- Starbucks is a marketplace leader.
In fact, according to a recent marketing study, they are the fastest
growing brand name in the world. They advertise themselves as
being a socially and environmentally responsible company. Starbucks
owns 4,000 cafes worldwide, buys 32 million gallons of milk (in
the US alone) and brews or sells more than 100 million pounds
of coffee each year. Starbucks has twenty percent of the coffee
shops in the US. By removing genetically engineered Bovine Growth
Hormone and other GE ingredients from their beverages and foods
and brewing Fair Trade once a week they can significantly impact
the entire food market. Starbucks has an obligation to provide
safe food for their consumers and a living wage to coffee growers.
2. Isn't Starbucks already selling Fair Trade
- Although Starbucks has bowed to
consumer pressure and begun selling certified Fair Trade or organic
coffee in bulk, they are still refusing to brew it on a weekly
basis. Starbucks boasts that in 2002 they will buy one million
pounds of Fair Trade coffee and brew it once a month. This is
a nominal amount, amounting to less than 1% of the company's total
- Starbucks claims that they pay
a fair price for their coffee and that although it is not certified
their beans are grown and handled under organic Fair Trade conditions.
Without certification this means nothing, since most of the money
paid ends up in the hands of middlemen instead of the farmers
- Many of Starbucks competitors
are already brewing Fair Trade and organic coffee daily.
- Global sales of Fair Trade Certified
coffee last year were only 30 million pounds (at a minimum price
of $1.26 per pound), leaving roughly 135 million pounds that were
produced by Fair Trade farmers but which had to be dumped on the
commercial market for only 50 cents per pound.
3. Haven't they stopped Using rBGH milk?
- No. Although Starbucks now offers
non-rBGH organic milk and soymilk as an option in most its US
cafes, most customers have not been made aware of this. In addition,
there is an excessive charge of 40¢ more per cup for these safer
alternatives. The vast majority of the 32 million gallons of
milk used in Starbucks cafes, and the bottled Frappuccino drinks
and ice cream sold in grocery stores have not been certified rBGH
free. In recent months Starbucks has also switched from rBGH-free
brands to rBGH tainted brand in places like Minnesota.