Now that Starbucks has stopped using ground-up bugs (cochineal extract, mmm) in its products, there’s a new, dairy-free battle vegans are fighting against the popular coffee chain, and it involves the beloved Pumpkin Spice Latte.
See, even if you order your PSL with soy milk instead of regular milk, that doesn’t mean that there are no animal products involved. A new Change.org petition brings light to this issue (which is actually nothing new), noting that the PSL mix itself contains condensed milk. And condensed milk comes from cows, which are animals, and thus not on the list of things vegans want to be drinking.
The petition wants Starbucks to rid the PSLs of condensed milk — which could cause a furor among the non-vegan, obsessed fans of the drink if the flavor changes even one tiny iota — so that everyone can order it without fear of drinking animal products.
Consumerist reached out to Starbucks to confirm that yes, Pumpkin Spice Lattes do include some dairy. A spokesman offered an alternative (which might not satisfy vegan customers looking for an in-store brewing experience): the Starbucks VIA Pumpkin Spice instant coffee flavor doesn’t contain dairy, and can be brewed with soy milk.
This made us wonder whether there are other products on the menu that many would assume don’t contain dairy, so we asked Starbucks about that as well:
“Several other flavored sauces served in some of our drinks also contain dairy, including white chocolate and caramel,” the spokesman explained. If customers are in doubt, the best thing to do is ask a barista for a list of ingredients, he added.