As much as people love their Starbucks, it is not immune from scandalous activity. In 2018, the company found itself at the center of controversy at several of its locations. These are the biggest scandals to hit Starbucks in 2018, that consumers of its coffee may have forgotten about.
In January, Starbucks found itself embroiled in a lawsuit that claimed it underfilled its drinks to save money on milk costs, CNBC reported. The lawsuit had Starbucks arguing that foam in lattes takes up space in the cup, despite the claims against them that they misrepresented the volume of their drinks. Starbucks won the lawsuit, with the judge ruling that foam is an essential ingredient and is considered part of the drink volume.
Starbucks baristas are notorious for getting customer names wrong on their drink order, but for one man, it was all too much to take. In March, a Scottish man, Cam Ashmall, was fed up with that employees made their “a” into a “u,” creating an offense name on his cup every time he would order from Starbucks, according to the Daily Mail. He took to Twitter to show his displeasure, and the tweet was shared thousands of times, the Daily Mail reported. The result of the error and response to Ashmall was quick as the following day his name was correctly spelled without the use of a “u,” according to the outlet.
April was a particularly tumultuous time for Starbuck as two African American men were arrested in a Philadelphia store for an alleged suspicion of trespassing. The men claimed they were waiting for a friend and an arrest of the men soon followed, according to The New York Times. The company found itself at the center of public outrage for the racial profiling of the customers, which prompted it to close more than 8,000 stores on May 29 for radial tolerance training of all its employees.
While not as debatable as other scandals that Starbucks was involved in during 2018, one that created some not so happy customers involved promotion of free reusable cups. When the company announced that it would be offering the cups free in November to customers that bought a holiday drink, it ran out of the coveted cups in record time, according to CNBC. This created outrage from patrons that wanted to get in on the deal. The result was nothing short of a disappointment for customers.