Consumer, environmental, and social justice activists in 300 US cities and four other nations (UK, Canada, Australia, New Zealand) will leaflet and stage protests in front of Starbucks coffee shops during a "Frankenbuck$" Global Week of Action Sept. 17-23. Organic consumers will criticize Starbucks' use of genetically engineered ingredients in their foods, beverages, and bottled Frappuccino drinks, their use of sweatshop labor coffee suppliers, as well as Starbucks' refusal to brew and seriously promote Fair Trade, shade-grown coffee as its "coffee of the day." Events are scheduled for Seattle, Portland, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Minneapolis, Chicago, New York, Atlanta, Philadelphia, Washington DC, Albuquerque, Houston, Sydney (Australia), Vancouver (Canada), Auckland (NZ), Newcastle (UK), and 300 other cities -- part of an ongoing international campaign against Starbucks which began on March 20. Starbucks, the largest gourmet coffee shop chain in the world, has previously indicated that it is considering giving in to at least some of the demands of the Organic Consumers Association, but still has not yet made a firm commitment.

In 300 cities, local activists will leaflet and protest Starbucks policies, demanding that the company remove recombinant Bovine Growth Hormone (rBGH) and other genetically engineered ingredients from its brand-name beverages, baked goods, chocolates, and ice cream; start brewing and seriously promoting Fair Trade, shade-grown, and organic coffees as its "coffee of the day;" and improve the wages and working conditions of farm workers on the coffee plantations of its suppliers in Guatemala, Mexico, and other nations.

"For six months now, Starbucks has been stonewalling. PR statements and halfway measures are not enough. Starbucks must either give in to the demands of consumers around the world for a non-genetically engineered product line, Fair Trade coffee, and social justice, or else they run the risk of further damage to their reputation and bottom line," stated Ronnie Cummins, National Director of the Organic Consumers Association.

Full details of the Starbucks campaign can be found at http://www.organicconsumers.org


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