Starbucks Hit with $5 Million Lawsuit for Underfilling Drinks and Hiding It With Ice

By Jonathan Zhou
Jonathan Zhou
Jonathan Zhou
Jonathan Zhou is a tech reporter who has written about drones, artificial intelligence, and space exploration.
May 1, 2016 Updated: May 1, 2016

The coffee giant Starbucks is being sued for $5 million for allegedly under-filling its drinks and covering up that fact with ice. 

Chicago resident Stacy Pincus said that customers are being misled by getting only half the drink they’re paying for. 

“A Starbucks customer who orders a Venti cold drink receives only 14 fluid ounces of that drink—just over half the advertised amount, and just over half the amount for which they are paying,” the complaint says, according to the Telegraph

It is a class-action lawsuit, filed on behalf of anyone who has purchased a cold drink from Starbucks in the past decade. 

“In the iced coffee example, a Starbucks customer who orders and pays for a Venti iced coffee, expecting to receive 24 fluid ounces of iced coffee based on Starbucks’ advertisement and marketing, will instead receive only about 14 fluid ounces of iced coffee,” the complaint states. 

“In essence, Starbucks is advertising the size of its cold drink cups on its menu, rather than the amount of fluid a customer will receive when they purchase a cold drink—and deceiving its customers in the process.” 

Steven Hart, the lawyer for the case, said that the final damages could be far above $5 million. 

In a statement to TMZ, Starbucks said the lawsuit was “absurd.”

“Our customers understand and expect that ice is an essential component of any ‘iced’ beverage.” It says it will gladly remake any beverage for an unsatisfied customer.”

Jonathan Zhou is a tech reporter who has written about drones, artificial intelligence, and space exploration.