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Starbucks to Halt Continual Brewing of Decaf After Noon

Starbucks may be generously giving back to the community, but it's a bit more tight-fisted when it comes to labor and production costs. As part of a drive to save the coffee giant $400 million by September, Starbucks announced Tuesday its stores will stop regularly brewing decaffeinated coffee after 12 p.m. The company said in a statement:

For many of our stores, the demand for decaf is greatly reduced in the afternoon. With our current standard of continually brewing decaf after 12 p.m. regardless of demand, we have seen a high amount of waste.

This cost-cutting measure is one among many that have recently been implemented, including brewing smaller pots of coffee. The company also plans to slash 6,700 jobs and close 300 more stores.

So far this announcement has received lots of negative press, and I can see why: This business decision seems contrary to all logic. Personally, I only drink coffee in the afternoon if it's decaf — and in the morning, I'll only drink joe if it's got caffeine. Do you agree that it doesn't seem to make sense? Or is this a smart decision for Starbucks?


exyank exyank 8 years
To those folks who don't understand drinking decaf (at all, under any circumstances), I like coffee. I don't always like to have my central nervous system stimulated by a fairly powerful and addictive drug. Therefore, sometimes I drink decaf (and for the record, tea also has caffeine in it, unless you drink herbal tea or green tea, and I don't care much for either of those). It's not exactly rocket science, is it? You want the coffee, but you don't want the caffeine?
LoveSarah LoveSarah 8 years
I drink regular coffee no matter what time of the day. I don't really see the point in decafe.
mellie_608 mellie_608 8 years
I don't think it should be a problem for them. I have worked in a kiosk before and if we didn't have the drip ready or fresh for the customer we would substitute an americano for the same price as the drip. So if you really want decaf after noon, this could be a strong argument for getting a decaf americano for the same price as the drip!
cupcake_ cupcake_ 8 years
I thought that people would want decaf in the that seems a bit twisted around to me. But I guess they know what they're doing!
Spectra Spectra 8 years
I would think most people would want decaf in the afternoons and evenings, but maybe most night owls that are going to Starbucks at night need the caffeine jolt to stay up late or something. I personally drink decaf if I'm drinking coffee in the afternoons/evenings and half-caff in the morning. But since I hate Starbucks, their new policy doesn't really affect me a whole lot.
Taadie Taadie 8 years
I think its a good move. Decaf in general seems to sit around all day whether you work in a n office or at Starbucks. Dump it and save the dough.
Mel475 Mel475 8 years
I agree that it seems counterintuitive but Starbucks must have done research before making this determination. However, unless I'm pregnant, I don't drink decaf either so it doesn't impact me. And like others have said, I'm not sure that the impact to those who do drink decaf is that great - for a little extra waiting time, they'll receive a really fresh cup of coffee! And if it saves Starbucks the money they need so they're not having to close stores and layoff employees, then I think it's a good move.
emalove emalove 8 years
I don't drink decaf ever, so I'm not concerned...
skiwi skiwi 8 years
I used to be a barista at Starbucks and this new rule seems very strange to me as well. At our store, we brewed decaf all day and at night after around 6 pm we would only brew decaf.
sunshinepointe sunshinepointe 8 years
That seems a bit counterintuitive if you ask me - people want caffeine in the morning and decaf in the afternoon/evening but I'm sure starbucks has trends to reflect this. For the person who wants to know why people bother drinking decaf - we just like the taste of coffee but don't want to be a jittery mess or get addicted to the caffeine. I read somewhere that decaf still has trace amounts of caffeine in it but not enough to get you addicted.
mom2ross mom2ross 8 years
My first thought was also "caffeine for the morning, decaf at night." But like megln1022 said - they must certainly have their reasons. And it is a plus, now I know if I order it in the afternoon, it'll be fresh. There are plenty of reasons to drink decaf, LaurenG22 - I did while I was pregnant. My dad drinks coffee from the moment he wakes up until he goes to sleep. If he only drank caffeinated, he'd be a wreck! And some people just don't care for the taste of tea. Now that I'm no longer pregnant and have a toddler, the word "decaf" no longer comes out of my mouth at Starbucks - anytime of day!!
colormesticky colormesticky 8 years
I think cutting back on waste is a great idea. I wish they would push refillable cups a little harder too.
mlen mlen 8 years
i'm assuming they had research to back up this decision otherwise they wouldn't have done it!
Lala0 Lala0 8 years
decaf americanos taste far better than brewed coffee anyway (in my opinion) and its made to order instead of sitting around in a pot for hours. when it comes to the decaf option, this is the way to go.
Modus-Vivendi Modus-Vivendi 8 years
It seems like most people would want decaf in the afternoon, but I know that's not the case for me. I'm more likely to drink a post-lunch coffee than any other time.
LaurenG22 LaurenG22 8 years
I don't understand why someone would drink decaf coffee. If you want no caffeine drink a natrural tea or something :shrug:
tlsgirl tlsgirl 8 years
I don't get it either. I agree that it seems counterintuitive.
HLHArts HLHArts 8 years
Just because they stop continuously brewing, it doesn't mean you couldn't order and receive decaf. It just means you would have to wait a few minutes, and then you would be getting a fresh cup.
amelioratelj amelioratelj 8 years
Personally, I don't even understand drinking decaf any time of the day. Gross!
mamasitamalita mamasitamalita 8 years
I'm with both of you.... decaf is for afternoons.... full caf is only for the REALLY LONG afternoons, or Fridays when I know I'm going out :)
merie33 merie33 8 years
No, I understand it completely. I previously worked at Dunkin Donuts and Panera Bread, and around 1 or 2 in the afternoon, we started dumping entire pots of decaf coffee when they expired. I could absolutely see brewing it to order, because even if they DO keep brewing like usual, the customer is going to be getting old sludgy coffee, because it sits there for the few people that come in and get it. It's probably more of an inconvenience for the employees and the customers to wait to brew it until needed, but it makes sense financially.
356UIK 356UIK 8 years
That makes no sense. I want caf in the morning and decaf in the afternoon. They live in the twilight zone.
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