‘Dead Calf’ at Starbucks? PETA to Challenge Vegan Upcharge at Annual Meeting

For Immediate Release:
March 15, 2022

Brooke Rossi 202-483-7382

Seattle – PETA supporters and Animal Rights Initiative (ARI) will cause a ruckus outside Starbucks’ headquarters tomorrow as they pose as a “mourning mother cow” and her “dead, bloodied calf” during the company’s annual meeting to protest the chain’s vegan milk surcharge and to point out that the dairy industry routinely kills male calves because they’re not considered “profitable.” Meanwhile, PETA will ask executives when the coffee chain will stop charging extra for climate- and animal-friendly vegan milk.

When:    Wednesday, March 16, 10 a.m.

Where:    Starbucks headquarters, 2401 Utah Ave. S., Seattle

“Dairy-free options are better for cows and their calves, and even Starbucks admits that they’re better for the planet,” says PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman. “PETA is hitting Starbucks’ boardroom and its headquarters with the message that it’s time to stop charging consumers extra for making kind choices.”

In its shareholder question, PETA will point out that cow’s milk is Starbucks’ biggest contributor to its carbon footprint and that it takes 628 liters of water to produce just 1 liter of it. Cows used for dairy are repeatedly artificially inseminated—workers shove an arm into the animals’ rectum to hold the cervix in place, and then use a metal rod to deliver semen into their vagina—and then sent to slaughter when their bodies give out. And because many people of color—including 75% of African Americans and Native Americans and 90% of Asian Americans—are lactose intolerant, Starbucks’ surcharge perpetuates dietary racism.

Among other actions, PETA and ARI supporters have descended on the café at Starbucks’ headquarters every single day since January 23.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to eat or abuse in any other way”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit PETA.org or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.

For Media: Contact PETA's
Media Response Team.


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 Ingrid E. Newkirk

“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind