ProVeg urges Starbucks to make plant-based milks free
ProVeg’s call comes after Starbucks recently announced new goals for reducing its environmental impact, as it claims climate-conscious consumers should not be charged extra.
ProVeg International, a global food awareness organisation, has urged Starbucks Europe, Middle East and Africa to drop its surcharge on plant-based milks if it is serious about achieving its new climate targets.
By 2030, the coffee chain is targeting 50 percent reductions in carbon emissions, water withdrawal and waste sent to landfill.
Dairy products are the biggest source of carbon dioxide emissions across Starbucks’ operations and supply chain, according to its new sustainability assessment. Although soymilk alternative is offered free, Starbucks customers who wish to choose other plant-based milks such as oat, almond or coconut, are subject to an additional charge, according to ProVeg.
“Now we know that dairy products are Starbucks’ primary climate culprit, we encourage the chain to follow in the footsteps of its competitors Costa and Pret a Manger and drop the surcharge on plant-based milks. The same goes for other major coffee chains still charging extra for sustainable alternatives to cow’s milk,” said Philip Mansbridge, Executive Director of ProVeg UK.
“We were delighted to hear Starbucks’ ambitious environmental targets, which we’re sure can be achieved if plant-based milk is placed at the heart of the solution. Instead of charging customers for being climate-conscious, let’s incentivise them, starting by making the more sustainable alternative – plant milks – free of charge,” he continued.
ProVeg outlined that, in 2018, Starbucks was responsible for emitting 16 million metric tonnes of greenhouse gases, using one billion cubic meters of water and dumping 868 metric kilotons — more than twice the weight of the Empire State Building — of coffee cups and other waste.