Starbucks to Raise Prices on Some Drinks

Posted on August 20, 2009

Bloomberg reports that Starbucks is raising prices on some of its drinks including frappuccinos and caramel macchiatos. Prices on some drinks will climb by as much as 30 cents. Extra shots will also cost more. The price hikes started today. There is some good news - Bloomberg says prices on Starbucks' lattes, cappuccinos and brewed coffee will go down slightly.
The increases average about 10 cents to 15 cents per beverage, and will also apply to extra shots of espresso or flavors, Valerie O'Neil, a spokeswoman for the Seattle-based company, said by telephone today. Prices on lattes, cappuccinos and brewed coffee will decrease 5 cents to 15 cents, the first price cut the company has made, she said.

"We're always looking for ways to provide more value to our customers while balancing our business responsibilities," O'Neil said by telephone today. "We're fine-tuning our pricing in select markets to better reflect geographic and cost considerations."

The coffee chain has seen sales fall in the recession as cash-strapped consumers visit the cafes less often. The price changes were reported by the Wall Street Journal earlier today.
Starbucks blamed the cost of doing business for the price increase on drinks. A report earlier this year indicated that people are already seeking alternatives to more expensive gourmet coffee. Price hikes aren't going to reverse that trend in a recession.

Starbucks also recently stopped selling the Sorbetto drink it had introduced in some of its California stores.