Sir Paul McCartney’s Vegan Plea to Starbucks Hits Garden, Empire States

For Immediate Release:
June 14, 2022

Robin Goist 202-483-7382

New York – Ahead of Sir Paul McCartney’s tour stop at MetLife Stadium on Thursday, PETA has just erected two sky-high messages—one in the Garment District and one right outside the Meadowlands—featuring the pop legend and his push for Starbucks to end the surcharge on vegan milks. It’s the latest in a campaign from PETA that also includes offering fans informative animal rights materials and vegan starter kits at every stop on McCartney’s national tour.

“Starbucks in the USA has an extra charge for plant-based milks as opposed to cow’s milk. I must say this surprised me as I understand that in other countries there is the same charge for both types of milk and I would like to politely request that you consider this policy also in Starbucks USA,” wrote McCartney in a widely read letter to then Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson. “I sincerely hope that for the future of the planet and animal welfare you are able to implement this policy.”

With a little help from his friends, McCartney could make that happen: Over 195,000 people have already urged Starbucks to drop the surcharge, and award-winning actor James Cromwell recently joined the campaign by gluing his hand to a Manhattan Starbucks store counter in protest of the surcharge. PETA activists have also held over 100 days of sit-ins at Starbucks’ headquarters in Seattle and giveaways of nitro cold brew mochas made with creamy oat milk—donated by RISE Brewing Co.—at Starbucks locations across the U.S.

PETA notes that the dairy industry is a major producer of the greenhouse gases that contribute to the climate catastrophe and is responsible for immense animal suffering. Starbucks has acknowledged that dairy is the company’s biggest contributor to its carbon footprint and proclaimed that it would strive to offer more plant-based foods and drinks as part of its sustainability solution—but has refused to make these options more accessible by dropping the surcharge. Cows used for dairy are artificially inseminated—workers insert an arm into the animals’ rectum and a metal rod to deliver semen into their vagina—and then sent to slaughter when their bodies have given out after repeated pregnancies.

The billboards are located at the intersection of W. 40th Street and Eighth Avenue in New York and at the intersection of Meadowlands Plaza and Sheraton Plaza Drive in East Rutherford, New Jersey.

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

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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