Starbucks sued for $5 million over the amount of ice in its iced drinks

NewsBy Neil Fetherston
Starbucks sued for $5 million over the amount of ice in its iced drinks

The global coffee giant, Starbucks, is being sued for $5million over the amount of ice it puts in its iced drinks.

Stacy Pincus alleges that customers are being misled because the chilled beverages contain just over half the drink they are paying for.

Starbucks is the largest coffee retailer in the world, with more than 24,0000 stores in 70 countries and over 11,000 in the United States alone.

The 29-page complaint was lodged in the Northern Illinois Federal Court in Chicago last week, according to Courthouse News Service.

"A Starbucks customer who orders a Venti cold drink receives only 14 fluid ounces of that drink — just over half the advertised amount, and just over half the amount for which they are paying," the complaint says.

"In the iced coffee example, a Starbucks customer who orders and pays for a Venti iced coffee, expecting to receive 24 fluid ounces of iced coffee based on Starbucks' advertisement and marketing, will instead receive only about 14 fluid ounces of iced coffee." 

Starbucks also charges more for cold drinks than hot ones, making iced beverages even more profitable, according to the complaint.

"In essence, Starbucks is advertising the size of its cold drink cups on its menu, rather than the amount of fluid a customer will receive when they purchase a cold drink — and deceiving its customers in the process," the complaint adds.

The case launched by Ms Pincus is a class action on behalf of anyone who bought a cold drink from Starbucks in the last 10 years.

Steven Hart, the lawyer acting on behalf of Ms Pincus, told the Telegraph the final figure for damages, should the case be successful, could be considerably higher than the $5 million in the writ.

Starbucks dismissed the lawsuit as “absurd”. It told the US website, TMZ, "Our customers understand and expect that ice is an essential component of any 'iced' beverage."

The company said it would happily remake a drink for an unhappy customer.