It’s a place that many of us hit up almost every day, whether it’s for a cappuccino, flat white or something sweeter and more exotic. A few of their coffee products are Fair Trade, which is great, but the sad reality is that Starbucks is one of the worst offenders for environmental destruction, and our Starbucks coffee habit is seriously destroying the planet.
Whilst other fast food giants including Krispy Kreme and KFC ensure their customers that any paper they used in their packaging is from sustainable sources, Starbucks uses a lot–and I mean A LOT–of virgin paper from ancient rainforests, which contributes not only to deforestation on the whole, but also the deaths and extinction of animals and worsens climate change. I don’t know about you, but it’s even been my experience that when I ask for a ceramic mug when I’m Starbucks ‘to stay,’ they often don’t even have any–the only option is to consume a throwaway cup made from a tree from an ancient forest. That’s just not on!
But it gets worse.
Palm oil is a key ingredient in a lot of commercial baked goods–like the muffins, cakes and cookies Starbucks sells. Whilst some palm oil is from sustainable sources, Starbucks’ isn’t. In fact, they source their palm oil from companies that clear rainforests to clear land to plant palm oil trees. Which means your Rise and Shine muffin or Double Chocolate cake is contributing to killing orangutans, rare bird and reptile species, and of course, environmental destruction overall.
Starbucks needs to make a serious effort to eradicate the ‘throwaway’ consumer culture they are helping propagate. They need more ceramic cups for stay-in customers and to use recycled paper for cups that will only be used for about five minutes (and if you ask us, there should even be a hefty charge for takeaway cups). Moreover, they need to clean up their dirty supply chain and source their palm oil from 100% sustainable sources.
It’s up to us to demand change! Companies DO react to consumer pressure. Click here to sign a petition that will really let Starbucks know what we think of their dirty habits, and pass it on! Together, we are powerful: www.sumofus.org/starbucks