Coffee Catastrophe: Starbucks Raises Coffee Prices

By Laura Strachan, Esq. on September 27, 2010 | Last updated on March 21, 2019

David Letterman once said, "I drink way too much coffee. But if it weren't for coffee, I'd have no identifiable personality whatsoever." The caffeine-loving comedian is one of the millions of Americans addicted to the delicious beverage that comes in an array of permutations ranging from lattes, cappuccinos, iced coffee, and espresso, to name a few. I, for one, consider my morning cup of coffee part of my daily vitamin routine.

Coffee and law students go together like peanut butter and jelly. The much-needed caffeine jolt is a necessary budgetary allowance, and one that may find students everywhere re-thinking their finances. Seattle-based Starbucks coffee, the ubiqutous chain that manages to have a location (sometimes two) on practically every street corner recently announced raising its prices. Translation: the necessary java jolt to get through a long night of outlines will now cost you more.

The Wall Street Journal reports on the selective price hike: "the price of green Arabica coffee, which is close to a thirteen-year high, and price volatility for other raw materials it uses, such as dairy products, sugar, and cocoa, have forced Starbucks to respond." The response will come in the form of unknown price increases in the store, as well as for their packaged coffee sold in supermarkets. Starbucks has yet to announce the new pricing scheme, but claims that raising coffee prices will allow the coffee juggernaut to maintain its earnings outlook for the fiscal year.

There is some good (or at least not bad) news for coffee connoisseurs everywhere: the price hike will only be applied to their larger and more labor-intensive beverages. So if you can forgo a venti mocha latte with two shots of espresso, light foam, and a splenda for a grande drip coffee, only your taste buds may notice the difference.

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