A Grande Problem for Starbucks-Loving Jews? | The Jewish Week | Food & Wine

A Grande Problem for Starbucks-Loving Jews?

Star-K issues kashrut alert, removing certification from many drinks

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Out of fear of cross-contamination with non-kosher equipment, Star-K is no longer certifying the kashrut of several beverages at Starbucks. The kosher certifying agency released an alert which has sent shockwaves through the observant coffee-drinking world. 

"At full service Starbucks stores that serve treif meat, one should avoid buying drinks prepared with equipment that may have been washed with treif equipment," said the Star-K statement.

If a store does not serve meat or cheese, all of the drinks on the Star-K's chart are permissible; the ruling does not impact unflavored coffee. The agency also pointed out that when one is traveling, or is simply away from his hometown, one doesn't need to be adhere to these new restrictions since traveling creates a loophole wherein other options are not readily available called "shaat hadchak."

The Orthodox Union kosher certification agency continues to list over 300 Starbucks products as kosher on its site.

This news comes just a few months after Starbucks removed the Anti Defamation League from its employee anti-bias training, another move that also caused an uproar within the Jewish community.

Starbucks founder and chairman, Howard Schultz, who is Jewish and originally from New York, stepped down last month. There is wide speculation that he will seek political office within the Democratic party.


Star-K's New Starbucks Guidelines

The following recommendations are for the USA and Canada only.

HOT BEVERAGE ACCEPTABLE AT ANY STARBUCKS ONLY ACCEPTABLE:
a) when traveling*; or
b) at freestanding stores (excludes stores within stores)  that don’t serve meat or cheese items
BOTTLED STARBUCKS DRINKS

 

(Cholov Stam). with a KD

Yes Yes
CAFFE AMERICANO

 

(Cholov Stam; With Soy/Almond Milk, Pareve, DE).
Use disposable cup. Avoid using the “shot” glass.

Yes Yes
CAPPUCCINO

 

(Cholov Stam; With Soy/Almond Milk, Pareve, DE)

Yes
COFFEE, REGULAR AND DECAF No Yes
ESPRESSO

 

Use disposable cup. Avoid using the “shot” glass.

Yes Yes
LATTE HOT/CAFFE LATTE

 

(Cholov Stam; With Soy/Almond Milk, Pareve, DE)

No Yes
ESPRESSO MACCHIATO

 

(Cholov Stam; With Soy/Almond Milk, Pareve, DE)

No Yes

ICED BEVERAGES** ACCEPTABLE AT ANY STARBUCKS ONLY ACCEPTABLE:
a) when traveling*; or
b at stores that don’t serve meat or cheese items
COLD BREW Yes Yes
ICED COFFEE No Yes
ICED CAFFE AMERICANO

 

(Cholov Stam; With Soy/Almond Milk, Pareve, DE)

Yes Yes
ICED CAFFE LATTE

 

(Cholov Stam; With Soy/Almond Milk, Pareve, DE)

Yes Yes
NITRO COLD BREW Yes Yes
TEAVANA BLACK ICED TEA No Yes
TEAVANA GREEN ICED No Yes
TEAVANA ICED WHITE TEA No Yes

 

*Traveling means when you are away from your hometown (this creates a situation of sha’as hadchak – i.e., no other viable option is readily available). You don’t need to be driving on the highway to fit into the category of traveling.

**Whipped Cream can be added upon request. Whipped cream found in most Starbucks stores carries a reliable Kosher certification. Before adding it to the product, consumers must first verify its kosher status by checking the original whipped cream container for a reliable kosher symbol.

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