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Starbucks accused of exposing customers to toxic pesticides



The problem is once again brewing for Starbucks, the global coffee empire, that Seattle billionaire Howard Schultz, who recently whistled to run for president before interrupting for three decades, building up in a strong caffeinated behemoth .

Tuesday's iconic company, which claims more than $ 22 billion in annual revenue and more than 27,500 outlets in nearly 80 countries, was merged with two lawsuits claiming that thousands of customers disputing Starbucks 100-century Manhattan stores have been exposed to a potentially fatal pesticide.

The lawsuits represent yet another public relation challenge for a company that has aggressively promoted, under Schultz & # 39; leadership, a socially conscious, environmentally friendly corporate image. In April 201

8, Starbucks suffered a PR disaster when the white leader of a Philadelphia store called police on two African-American men, who simply waited for a business meeting, resulting in arrest and temporary imprisonment.

A class action lawsuit filed by 10 Starbucks New York Supreme Court customers claims that "Starbucks stores throughout Manhattan have, for many years, been steeped in a poisonous pesticide called Dichlorvos (2,2-dichlorovinyl dimethyl phosphate or DDVP & # 39;), Very toxic and completely unsuitable for use near food, beverages and humans. "Starbucks knows DDVP's toxic qualities and knows it has been used in Starbucks & # 39; stores throughout Manhattan "add," but have also not taken appropriate steps to stop the use or informed customers of the hazardous conditions to which they have inadvertently been exposed. "

The case continues:" DDVP is an active ingredient that Derived from the air by products called "No-Pest Strips", which are intended to be used only in unoccupied structures to remove such structures from pests, insects and insects. But they are explicitly not to be used anywhere people are present, and especially in situations where the pesticide may come into contact with food and / or beverages. The label on these products is clearly warned: & nbsp; & nbsp; & nbsp; & nbsp; & nbsp; & nbsp; & nbsp; & nbsp; & nbsp; & nbsp; & nbsp; & nbsp; & nbsp; & nbsp; & nbsp; and Do not use in kitchens, restaurants or areas where food is prepared or served. & # 39; "

The federal disease control and prevention centers say prolonged exposure to DDVP by trial – can cause" bladder control loss, muscle tremor, respiration, nausea, anxiety, diarrhea, muscle weakness, cramps and paralysis and that more severe exposure can even result in coma, inability to breathe and death. "

In an email to The Daily Beast, a Starbucks spokesman declined class dress and another lawsuit filed in federal court by a fired Starbucks store manager and two of the coffee company's extinction companies – claiming that Starbucks leaders are repeated after they repeatedly has warned about the danger of pesticides – as a false attempt to shake down the company.

"The lawsuits filed by the applicants and their lawyers lack profit and are an attempt to raise public fears of their own financial gain", Starbucks emailed "We are doing very well to ensure our partners' security [the Starbucks term for ‘employees’] and our customers, and we are convinced that they are not compromised. Starbucks takes its partners' concerns very seriously and does not take action or retaliate against partners who express them. "


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