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Gross Starbucks

Last week there was Dumb Starbucks that LA lined up for, and the news that Subway was using a chemical found in yoga mats to make their ever-fresh breads. It’s been an exciting time for global brands! The suspect chemical, azodiacarbonamide, is banned in Europe, Australia, and conscientious Singapore and Japan, but still fine for everyone else to eat – and we know that pretty much anything goes in China. Starbucks China has come clean and admitted that they also use azodiacarbonamide in their pastries, and they’re a bit unapologetic about it. It’s considered a legal food additive in the U.S. as well as China, just maybe not the most PR friendly of ingredients. Funnily enough, Subway China has come...

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Gross Starbucks

Last week there was Dumb Starbucks that LA lined up for, and the news that Subway was using a chemical found in yoga mats to make their ever-fresh breads. It’s been an exciting time for global brands! The suspect chemical, azodiacarbonamide, is banned in Europe, Australia, and conscientious Singapore and Japan, but still fine for everyone else to eat – and we know that pretty much anything goes in China. Starbucks China has come clean and admitted that they also use azodiacarbonamide in their pastries, and they’re a bit unapologetic about it. It’s considered a legal food additive in the U.S. as well as China, just maybe not the most PR friendly of ingredients. Funnily enough, Subway China has come...

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Smalltown, USA: Mar Vista Block Party

Next Mayor? Jan Perry and my mother.   Mar Vista is a neighborhood located in the Westside of Los Angeles containing parts of well trafficked streets: the famous Venice Blvd which spans from downtown to Muscle Beach, the infamous Sawtelle Blvd – the bottom portion from the “Sawtelle” neighborhood, the secret artery – Palms, and Centinela which connects both Santa Monica airport to LAX. All neighborhoods have plenty of streets, each having their important characteristics, Mar Vista is part of that lore. There’s been signs on the idyllic Charnock Avenue near where my parents live (yes there are garden islands on this two lane street) advertising a Block Party. It takes place annually just one block from my parents house....

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Starbucks in China – Lingering Customers

The problem of coffee shops everywhere. Lingering customers who aren’t spending. It’s happening in China. Imagine, holding a coffee cup with the Starbucks logo is a status symbol. It’s America’s huge coffee chain. In China, it’s expensive and what’s the next best thing if you can’t afford a cup? Hanging out in Starbucks. Meetings happen and people bring their own food, yet it’s a roaring start for a company that’s seeking to build a brand. (Reuters – Starbucks)

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Starbucks in China to Grow

Yes, the article says the average drinker in China is 3 cups a year. Plenty of space for growth, but imagine in the countryside in a country that’s gigantic, have they even seen coffee or heart of it? Yet there’s 500 shops in China and growing. Is it? Does Starbucks cater to the 1% or less in China with enough money to pay for a drink that’s considered luxurious? Yes and that’s what they’re doing since that’s the only people who’ll pay for expensive and mediocre coffee. (WSJ – China)

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