Concerns about the coronavirus have caused Starbucks to roll back a longstanding policy of filling customers’ personal cups or providing them with “for here” ware versus single-use disposable cups.
“We are optimistic this will be a temporary situation,” the company said in a statement.
Customers who bring in their own cup or request “for here” ware will still receive the 10-cent discount per usual.
“Pausing” the reusable mug/for here program was just of one several precautionary steps announced by Starbucks in response to COVID-19. Other actions include increased cleaning and sanitizing, restricted business-related air travel, and the provision of “scenario-based” procedural information to store staff on how to handle customers or colleagues who may be affected by the virus.
“Although the situation remains fluid, our U.S. and international markets have gleaned learnings from our leadership team and partners in China who were first faced with this epidemic,” the company said.
Starbucks operates approximately 17,000 stores in North America.