In response to consumer pressure, Starbucks announced it will replace cochineal coloring derived from crushed bugs and instead use a tomato-based ingredient to color several products, including its strawberry Frappuccinos.
"We’ve learned that we fell short of [customer] expectations by using natural cochineal extract [in our food and beverage products]. Our commitment to . . . our customers, is to serve the highest quality products available," said Cliff Burrows, president of Starbucks U.S.
A campaign on Change.org was led by blogger Daelyn Forney, and more than 6,000 signed the petition against the use of cochineal coloring in Starbucks products.
"What originally began as a story to inform vegans that their Starbucks' Strawberry Frappucino was no longer safe to consume ended up being an issue that bothered many people," said Fortney. "Thanks to social media and my petition on Change.org, within a matter of weeks, Starbucks has agreed to rectify the situation, showing that it is a stand-up company that cares about its consumers."
According to Burrows, Starbucks plans on being fully transitioned from existing product inventories to revised food and beverage offerings near the end of June across the U.S.