Starbucks to Expose Calorie Counts on Menus Around U.S.

Semi-bad news for any ignorance-is-bliss-believing Starbucks customer who will now have to squint their eyes when deciding how many calories they are willing to ingest.

Starting on June 25, 2013, Starbucks all over the U.S. will be displaying calorie counts on their raised chalkboard menus. Customers everywhere will now be able to use these boards to guide their choice of drink, as well as the glass pastry cases containing mouth watering cake pops and baked goods, which too will be labeled. According to the notice the Starbucks website posted, the multi-billion dollar global company is taking this step as a positive one, extending its “commitment to wellness” and to broadening its “transparency.”

Calorie counts, which are already available on the Starbucks iPhone app, website, and in print brochures, resulted from U.S. Food and Drug Administration pressures forcing food chains with 20 or more locations to add calorie counts to their menus. Starbucks, which is looking to shift gears, selling more food and tea in addition to coffee, said adding calorie counts is the latest in a series of wellness steps taken over the past 15 years. According to an article on Buzzfeed, Starbucks has been using 2% milk rather than whole as its standard for beverages in North America since 2007.

“Menu labeling is yet another step to extend our commitment to wellness, ensuring our customers and partners (employees) have the information they need to make informed decisions and understand all the ways that they can customize their Starbucks® beverages to be within their desired calorie range,” said Mary Wagner, PhD and senior vice president, Global Research & Development at Starbucks. “Starbucks believes that wellness is the journey to a happy, healthy life through daily choices, whether it’s a favorite beverage or a wholesome meal option.”

Maybe a visual push like this one is something all customers need to be a little healthier and not feel so guilty when splurging on a Starbucks beverage. 

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