For Immediate Release:
November 18, 2022
Moira Colley 202-483-7382
Detroit – The Starbucks store at 18051 Mack Ave. was shut down today after four PETA supporters encased themselves in concrete, blocking the entrance and exit for four hours, making the point—with signs and chants—that the company needs to stop charging extra for vegan milks, which spare cows immense suffering and slash carbon emissions. Two of the protesters were taken away in an ambulance. Photos of the “cement in” are available here, and video footage is available here.
Happening Now: PETA Supporters in ‘Cement Shoes’ Shut Down Local Starbucks
Wearing shirts emblazoned with “Not Your Mom, Not Your Milk” and “End the Vegan Upcharge,” PETA supporters have encased their feet in concrete and are blocking the entrance to the Starbucks store at 18051 Mack Ave. The action calls on Starbucks to stop penalizing people who are concerned about cows, the environment, and their own health by charging extra for the plant-based milks it already agrees are better for the planet—and comes on the last day of the 2022 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP27). Animal agriculture is responsible for nearly one-fifth of human-induced greenhouse gas emissions. Starbucks claims to care about sustainability, yet the company continues to impose an upcharge on nondairy milk. The protest is being livestreamed on Facebook here.
“Starbucks’ punitive price hike on vegan milks harms cows, the planet, and customers who are lactose-intolerant—many of whom are people of color,” says PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman. “PETA has appealed to Starbucks to stop profiting from the plant-based milk upcharge, but so far, greed continues to define the company’s position.”
The group’s previous “cement-in” took place outside a Starbucks store in Nashville, Tennessee, and resulted in the arrest of four PETA supporters after they’d spent more than four hours with their feet encased in concrete. Other PETA supporters—including Succession star James Cromwell—have superglued themselves to counters at Starbucks locations at the company’s Seattle headquarters, in New York’s Times Square, and in Chicago to protest the upcharge. Sir Paul McCartney has written to former and current Starbucks CEOs, asking them to drop the upcharge.
Cows used for dairy are forcibly inseminated (raped)—workers insert an arm into the cow’s rectum and a metal rod to deliver semen into her vagina—and their beloved calves are torn away from them so that the milk meant to nourish their babies can be used by humans. Once their bodies wear out after repeated pregnancies, they’re sent to slaughter.
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.