Notices are going to be posted at all Starbucks coffee stores explaining that smoking will be restricted within 25 feet of the stores as well as in the outdoor seating areas. Spokeswoman Jaime Riley said the expanded rule stems from “a sense of responsibility to provide customers with a safe and healthy environment.”
The 25-feet smoke-free radius is flexible based on each store’s lease size, Riley said. If Starbucks-controlled property only extends 15 feet from a particular store’s exterior, then smokers outside the area are free to puff away if local law allows.
The new decree applies to all 7,000 company-owned stores within the
Starbucks is the largest coffeehouse company in the world, with 20,891 stores in 62 countries. Since Starbucks’ founding in 1971 in
Starbucks has always wanted to be a retailer with a conscience. In 1999, Starbucks started “Grounds for your Garden” to make its business environmentally friendlier. Stores provide leftover coffee grounds free to anyone requesting them for composting. In 2004, Starbucks began reducing the size of its paper napkins and store garbage bags. As a result it lightened its solid waste production 1,800,000 pounds. Starbucks began using 10% recycled paper in its cups in 2004, which it claimed was the first time recycled material had been used in a product that came into direct contact with a food or beverage.
In 2000, the company introduced a line of fair trade products. Since launching its FTC coffee line in 2000, Starbucks has made a significant contribution to family farmers through its rapidly growing FTC coffee volume.
Ethos, a brand of bottled water acquired by Starbucks in 2003, is sold at locations throughout
In some states and municipalities which already restrict smoking space, Starbucks’ new policy will face little backlash but in other places like Great Neck, New York the ban will not even be put into effect because local laws prevail. According to village code at the
The rationale for smoking bans is based on the premise that smoking is optional, whereas breathing is not. Therefore, proponents say, smoking bans exist to protect breathing people from the effects of second-hand smoke, which include an increased risk of heart disease, cancer, emphysema, and other diseases. Research has generated evidence that second-hand smoke does cause the same problems as direct smoking.
Public sentiment about the ban seems to be split in very predictable ways. Those who do not smoke are for it; those who do feel discriminated against.
Meredith Robinson can’t wait. The non-smoker said the new rule allows her to enjoy the outdoor seating, too. “It makes for a better environment because a lot of people go to Starbucks and drink their coffee, too, especially on a pretty day like this,” said Robinson.
Long-time smoker Charli Dirani believes Starbucks will lose business under the policy by kicking people, like him, to their curb or even farther away. “I think for them to stop that is a conflict between the two,” said Dirani. “Everybody knows coffee and cigarettes go hand-in-hand.”
AdWeek magazine says that “since smoking bans have swept the nation in the last decade, it’s doubtful there will be a huge backlash for the brand. In fact, there’s been an online movement from Starbucks’ consumers calling for the newly revealed policy since at least 2009.”
“We’re pretty optimistic that people will be supportive and at the very least cooperative,” Spokesperson Riley said.
As for customers who continue to smoke on Starbucks property after Saturday? “We are confident that we can resolve any concern amicably,” Riley said.
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