Starbucks baristas will no longer write ‘Race Together’ on cups

Company CEO Howard Schultz isn’t backing down from the program as a whole, however.

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As of Sunday, Starbucks baristas have returned to simply writing coffee orders and (possibly misspelled) names on customers’ drink cups.

In an open letter on the Starbucks website, CEO Howard Schultz said the company’s controversial practice of writing the phrase “Race Together” on the cups —intended as a way to spark conversation about race relations—”will be completed as originally planned today, March 22.”

The New York Times noted the rather curious phrasing:

That end date had not previously been mentioned publicly, including during Mr. Schultz’s discussion of the initiative at the company’s annual shareholders meeting last week, but a company spokeswoman, Laurel Harper, said employees had been told about it.

If that’s the case, the component of the company’s “Race Together” campaign—one of the major topics of discussion at the company’s annual shareholders meeting—that customers most clearly saw was meant to last less than a week.

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