Free Coffee! PETA ‘Cows’ to Hijack Chicago Starbucks Customers in Surcharge War

For Immediate Release:
April 17, 2023

Nicole Meyer 202-483-7382

Chicago – Capping off a week of action targeting Starbucks for charging extra for animal-friendly, emissions-slashing vegan milks, PETA supporters wearing cow masks will gather outside the world’s largest Starbucks store on Wednesday to intercept would-be customers with free RISE Brewing Co. oat milk lattes. The push for passersby to avoid the coffee chain comes after nearly 150,000 PETA supporters asked the company to end its vegan upcharge and after Starbucks admitted that nondairy milks are better for the planet.

When:    Wednesday, April 19, 12 noon

Where:    Outside Starbucks Reserve Chicago Roastery, 646 Michigan Ave, Chicago

“Starbucks is counting its beans when it should be counting the number of customers it will lose if it doesn’t end the vegan milk upcharge,” says PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman. “People who choose to drink responsibly for the sake of animals or their own health or because they know that dairy farming is fueling the climate catastrophe are angry with the company for placing profits above ethics.”

PETA’s week of action included over 20 protests around the country, and the group has held vegan coffee drink giveaways outside Starbucks locations in Boston, Cincinnati, New York, Philadelphia, and numerous other cities. PETA previously hit the Chicago Roastery with a sit-in on its opening day and held a glue-in at another local Starbucks location, during which a Buddhist monk superglued his hand to the café counter.

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to eat or abuse in any way”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview.

For more information, please visit, listen to The PETA Podcast, or follow the group on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.

For Media: Contact PETA's
Media Response Team.


Get PETA Updates

Stay up to date on the latest vegan trends and get breaking animal rights news delivered straight to your inbox!

By submitting this form, you are agreeing to our collection, storage, use, and disclosure of your personal info in accordance with our privacy policy as well as to receiving e-mails from us.

 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