Controversy At Starbucks Over What Was Written On Cup

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There is controversy brewing about the way a Connecticut businessman’s drink was labeled at Starbucks.

If you’ve ever been to one of the ubiquitous coffee chain’s stores you already know the drill:  You place your order and give the cashier your name, a few minutes later the “barista” calls out your name, which is written on your cup.

That’s how it went for one Connecticut finance worker, except it was something else written on his cup, that left him shocked.

We met David in Darien, Connecticut, on Monday – the town in which he works.

But it was in New York City, where he commutes daily, that the word “China” was written on his Starbucks drink.

“I go there all the time. It’s my local one”, said David, who asked FOX CT to not use his last name.

David did a double-take and then posted a photo of the cup on his Facebook page, which quickly drew disbelief and outrage from his friends, especially those who are also of Chinese descent.

“I was looking at my cup and then I see the word China on it and I was like whoa this is kind of weird. It never happened before. Usually they’ll put your name on it or what type of drink you have,” said David.

Starbucks corporate declined our request for an interview but did say they will investigate this incident.

“Starbucks does not tolerate discrimination of any kind. … This type experience is unacceptable and not indicative of the welcoming and respectful service we strive to offer our customers in our stores,” said Jaime Riley of Starbucks Coffee.

David remains surprised that an employee wouldn’t know better.

“I would assume when they go through corporate training they would know not to put racial stuff on a cup,” he said.

Starbucks does offer a drink called “China Green Tips Full Leaf Tea,” but David says he simply asked for “green tea” when he placed his order.

Either way, David says he is shocked more than he’s angered, but adds that he wouldn’t mind a direct apology from the company.

“If they just said I’m sorry about this what happened we’ll be more careful next time that’d be fine.”

A simple Google search shows this may not have been the only time a customer received a drink from a Starbucks location with a potentially offensive Asian term written on the cup.

Starbucks also told us their company has “a lengthy history of leading on and supporting policies that promote equality, inclusion and diversity.”

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6 comments

  • Westie68

    I once ordered a coffee with no cream and no sugar and they wrote "black" on it. Anybody got Al or Jesse's phone number? We need to organize a march.

    Drink your China Green Tea and go to work. Idiot!

  • Sam

    Wow. This is your crisis?

    It's not like they wrote something derogatory. Stop being a whiny ignorant waste of human flesh, drink your tea and change your soiled diaper.

    I can't believe someone thought this was a relative and interesting contribution to the news.

  • boh1066

    what a waste of time and resources for everyone involved, including my stupid self for reading this 'news'. it's not that complicated…..the barista misunderstood the order. IT HAPPENS ALL THE TIME!!!! and wrote china as an abbreviation for the longer name. if the barista were stupid enough to write something racist on a cup that they know is going to be GIVEN TO THE CUSTOMER, then i doubt the barista would be smart enough to do it so 'subtly'. it would have probably said ch!nk or slanty….not china. this man needs to GET OVER HIMSELF.

  • CoffeeFiend

    Hmm. While I believe racism (particularly against Asians) is a serious problem in our country, "China" is written down where they are supposed to mark the kind of drink it is, not where they put the name of the person and since they have a type of green tea that originates from China, I have to side with Starbucks on this one. They are really big into their beverage origins. I have ordered Ethiopian coffee on the clover that was labeled Ethiopian down in that box and Sumatra, etc. etc. I feel kind of bad for the barista who did this – I really don't think it was meant to be a slur. They truly do use the origins as short hand for the type of tea and coffee. Can't believe Fox news didn't investigate this further!!!