Starbucks no longer kosher. Storm in a coffee cup ensues.

Starbucks no longer kosher. Storm in a coffee cup ensues. July 14, 2018

Star-K, a US-based kosher-certifying agency, is the bringer of bad tidings to Jews who buy Starbucks’ coffee. It says it can no longer vouch for the ‘kosherness’ of several flavoured beverages – and blamed the corporation for ending an arrangement it had with K-Star. 
This, according to the the Star-K website:

Please be advised that Starbucks corporation has decided to end the expanded STAR-K kosher information program.
Consumers are advised that effective immediately the STAR-K can only recommend a limited number of drinks and can no longer vouch for the kashrus of many of the flavored items previously listed.

According to this report, Star-K for years kept a list of the drinks prepared at Starbucks that it called “kosher friendly”. The stores were not under the certifying agency’s supervision, but Star-K regularly checked in with the company to determine which items were kosher friendly – that is, contained no “objectionable ingredients”. In recent years, even Frappuccinos were considered OK for kosher observers.
But several years ago, Starbucks began selling sandwiches, including some made with bacon and non-kosher cheese. That brought up kosher issues, like whether the utensils used to make the coffee were washed with utensils that had been used with non-kosher items in the store.
Nevertheless, Star-K posted a new list of Starbucks drinks that can be considered acceptable for kosher observers. They include cafe Americano, espresso, iced caramel brulee latte and nitro cold brew served in paper cups.
Exceptions were also made for drinkers who buy their coffee at outlets that don’t serve meat or cheese items, or are traveling.
This is what Star-K “says about traveling:

When one is traveling, (traveling means when one is away from home and no other viable kosher certified coffee option is readily available),  this creates a situation of sha’as hadchak – i.e., a difficult situation and one need not be concerned with the restrictions on the beverages listed below (based on the Psak of the Noda B’Yehuda quoted in Yad Ephraim, Y.D. 122-6, D’H’ Shelo’ it can be found in Shu”t Noda B’Yehuda Kama 36) . One does not need to be driving on the highway to fit into the category of traveling.

It adds:

We cannot recommend syrups, sauces, toppings, powders, soy or almond milk or other items not listed below unless customer confirms that they bear a reliable certification.

A petition – “Make Starbucks Kosher Again” – points out that:

Orthodox Jews are no longer able to consume MANY of the Starbucks products we have been enjoying since this new program started a little over two years ago.
Please sign the petition to show that you care that it’s not Kosher anymore and would like this program to be reinstated.

So far, 8,043 have signed, with one saying:

For a company that closed down all their stores for 8 hours for sensitivity training when people want to use their bathrooms without making a purchase they can at least show a little sensitivity to Orthodox Jews who would like to be paying customers!

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  • CoastalMaineBird

    whether the utensils used to make the coffee were washed with utensils that had been used with non-kosher items
    You mean a CLEAN spoon is now UNCLEAN if it was washed with an UNCLEAN spoon?
    How anal can you get? Do you really worship a god who spends time checking your dishwashing practices?

  • Broga

    But it is still OK to poison us with particles of plastic in tap water – recent articles in New Scientist and The Guardian.

  • AgentCormac

    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: what is it with religion and their pointless, demoralising, life-sapping rules? Why can’t they just let people be happy?!!! (Rhetorical question, BTW.)

  • L.Long

    p’Tak to the jews. You have really dumb ass stupid rules, and since you can’t eat bacon, you are in a living hell!!! You want starbucks to cater to your silly idiocy? Then you had better be able to hurt their profits!

  • Angela_K

    I’ve never been to one of these tax-dodging, over-priced coffee shops and I suggest these whinging Jews do the same if they consider Starbucks to be non kosher.
    I see the fake charge of “islamophobia “is being banded about because Lancashire council has banned stunned meat.

  • Stuart H.

    So paying Star-K money for doing – well – nothing really – makes everything kosher again?
    Nice scam if you can get away with it.
    At worst, Starbucks did an audit and discovered that one sub-section of a particular brand of religiot isn’t putting enough business their way, so no point going out of anyone’s way pandering to their odd dietary demands. That’s not a problem, it’s a sensible marketing decision.

  • RussellW

    What a collection of narcissists, who cares? Adult humans in a state of agitation over nothing, but that’s religion isn’t it?
    I hope Starbucks doesn’t buckle, perhaps they could charge a premium for kosher food, say 1000%.
    Australians weren’t impressed with Starbucks products and the company contracted its operations here and probably lost a bundle. It’s interesting that Starbucks also got its fingers burnt in Israel. Both countries have a long established cafe coffee culture.

  • Dioigi

    As a lifelong vegetarian I was unable to take school meals and took packed lunches to school every day. Cafes and restaurants did not cater to vegetarians and so I very rarely ate at these establishments. If someone doesn’t cater for you you work around it and don’t whine that you are being discriminated against.

  • 1859

    All you need do is say a kush’ney pudeka prayer and the fedrapini’ goy will be safe as long as the guter’n’loopa- doopa is turned towards the rising yuckla at about 4pm each day. So I can’t honestly see the problem. Religion can be such fun – but only when and if you are able to believe in the utterly nonsensical.

  • Great Satan

    Kosher/halal certification is a religious shakedown ;

  • jtd

    When I read stuff like this, you’d think by now that the Jews and the Muslims would have unified to fight against this “discrimination” since they both have their brains up their a$$es…

  • Stephen Mynett

    If the Jews can get round some of their idiot Sabbath laws by throwing a piece of string/wire, an Eruv, around their houses, why not all carry portable ones. I suggest a Hula hoop that has been specially bless/pissed on by a Rabbi (at a cost of course).
    Once they have this portable Eruv they would be free to do what they want inside it, drink coffee, even have it looped over the shoulder on a plane in case any unclean passengers (almost certain to be women) passed by or anything else a normal person would do without thinking about it.

  • Brian Jordan

    Angel a K:
    Lancashire council has banned stunned meat
    Is that a typo, and you meant un-stunned, or just out of date – previously they did exactly that!

  • Angela_K

    @Brian Jordan. Whoops! I missed that.