Top 10 Reasons Starbucks Should Switch to Milk Produced without the Artificial Growth Hormone rBGH
- It Makes Cows Sick
rBGH increases the risk of infections in cows
- It May Make You Sick
When cows have infections they are treated with common antibiotics such as penicillin. Increased antibiotic use in food animals is a serious problem and contributes to the growth of antibiotic resistant bacteria, which make you sick and are harder to treat.
- It May Cause Problems in Humans
When cows are injected with rBGH it increases another hormone, called IGF-1, in the cow and the cow's milk. Too much IGF-1 in humans is linked with increased rates of colon, breast and prostate cancer. While it's not clear that rBGH given to cows increases IGF-1 in humans, why take the chance just so dairies can produce more milk?
- It's Banned Elsewhere
RBGH is banned in Canada, Japan, Australia, New Zealand and ALL 25 Countries in the European Union.
- Starbucks is a “Socially Responsible Business”
Starbucks markets itself as a “socially responsible business and stated that it “champions...business practices that produce social environmental and economic benefits for Starbucks communities globally.” These practices should also include treating cows humanely an providing customers with milk produced without genetically engineered hormones
- The Impact Would Be Huge
Demand breeds supply. Starbucks, can require that dairies selling to them stop using rBGH. Starbucks can expand the market for rBGH-free milk as it did for Fair Trade Coffee. If Starbucks made the switch to rBGH-free milk it would send a strong message to the dairy industry about consumers distaste for recombinant bovine growth hormone.
- Starbucks Can Afford It
Starbucks is in a position to spend a few cents more per gallon of milk. In 2005, its profit were almost $500 million, and one-year net income growth was 26 percent. In just one year it sold over $6 billion worth of goods.
- Starbucks has already acknowledged that there needs to be a change
In a 2001 letter to the Organic Consumers Association, Starbucks pledged: “Starbucks will begin to offer RBST-free milk as an option upon request... we expect rBST-free milk alternative will be available in all our company-owned U.S. Stores by the end of the summer.” Not much has happened since 2001, five years later, Starbucks still uses rBGH milk. Although Starbucks offers an organic milk upon request, the availability is not well publicized. Furthermore there is no rBGH-free option for bottled Frappaccino drinks and ice creams.
- Other Companies Are Doing It
In the last several years, due to consumer demand and company ethics, many brands and dairies have pledged to be rBGH free. Ben & Jerry's and Tillamook Cheese both have banned the hormone and made their dairy producers pledge to ban rBGH with out going organic.
- Consumers Deserve Better!
Milk made with out genetically-engineered hormones should be the standard, not a luxury item. Let your local Starbucks know that you deserve better and ask them to stop using milk from cows injected with rBGH!!