SAN FRANCISCO—A lawsuit has been filed against the Starbucks Corporation by local resident Siera Strumlauf and Carlsbad resident Benjamin Robles on March 16. Strumlauf and Robles have filed the lawsuit against Starbucks for consistently underfilling Lattes.
In the case, Strumlauf and Robles brought up that Lattes from Starbucks are approximately 25 percent under-filled. Starbucks standardized their current recipe for Lattes in 2009 to save on the cost of milk. In this recipe, the employee is to fill a pitcher with the steamed milk used to make Lattes up to a “fill-to” line depending on the size of the beverage. Then espresso shots are added and the Latte is topped with a milk foam leaving space of 1/4 of an inch from the top of the cup.
The cups that Starbucks advertises, Tall, Grande, and Venti, hold the exact amount of fluid advertised if filled to the brim. Strumlauf and Robles state that the cups are too small for the amount of liquid advertised, the “fill-to” lines are too low by several ounces, and since 1/4 inch of room is left at the top the drinks are consistently underfilled due to the recipe. This shortchanges the customers and saves Starbucks millions of dollars by taking money for more product than they deliver, according to both plaintiffs.
According to the case, Starbucks is allegedly in violation of California’s False Advertising Law, California’s Unfair Competition Act, and California’s Consumers Legal Remedies Act. When reached for comment from Patch.com, a spokesperson responded, “We are aware of the plaintiffs’ claims, which we fully believe to be without merit. We are proud to serve our customers high-quality, handcrafted and customized beverages, and we inform customers of the likelihood of variations.”