Starbucks U.S. Introduces Starbucks VIA Decaf for Holiday Season

SEATTLE, October 12, 2009 - In two weeks since the national availability of Starbucks VIA™ Ready Brew, and a four-day customer taste challenge in all U.S. and Canada Starbucks stores, early indicators show that Starbucks VIA™ is exceeding expectations. In response to customers' No. 1 product request upon tasting Starbucks VIA™ Ready Brew, the company will offer a decaf option starting Nov. 17 in all U.S. company-operated and licensed locations. In addition, Starbucks (NASDAQ:SBUX) newest product innovation recently received critical acclaim from Progressive Grocer in their annual 2009 Editors' Pick as "Best New Consumer Product".

Beginning Nov. 17, and just in time for the Holiday entertaining season, U.S. customers will have access to a rich, bold cup of Starbucks Decaf Italian Roast in an instant. Starbucks VIA™ Ready Brew Decaf Italian Roast is made with the same high-quality arabica coffee sourced from the world's finest coffee supply and is naturally decaffeinated. The arabica coffee used in the Decaf Italian is roasted according to the specific Starbucks® Roast profile to deliver the aroma, body and rich flavor expected from Starbucks® brewed coffee. It can be made by adding hot (or cold) water, which brews the coffee in an instant.

"Many of our customers have been surprised and impressed to learn they were drinking instant coffee," said Cliff Burrows, president, Starbucks U.S. "We are encouraged by our early results and positive response from both our customers and our partners. Our reinvention of this category has given us the ability to create the authentic taste and quality of Starbucks® coffee in an instant form."

Starbucks VIA™ Gains Momentum in the Marketplace

Starbucks VIA™ Ready Brew has been voted "Most Innovative New Product of the Year" in the U.K. by Allegra Strategies and "Best New Consumer Product" by Progressive Grocer magazine in the U.S. These awards further establish Starbucks VIA™ Ready Brew as a leader in the instant coffee market. Starbucks VIA™ will also be seen at top events this month, offering taste makers an exclusive taste of the product. Thrillist, the leading free men's email newsletter is taking 150 guests on a three-day adventure to a mystery destination Oct. 17 – 19, and Starbucks VIA™ is going along for the ride. The influential attendees will enjoy Starbucks VIA™ throughout the Jet Mystery trip. Starbucks VIA™ will also be served at the fifth annual "The Great Gathering of Chefs" in New York City on Oct. 18.

Never be without the latest from Starbucks VIA™

Now through Nov. 10, customers who share their experiences with Starbucks through photos, videos and short stories online can also enter to win one of five Starbucks VIA™ Experience Contests. To see just how and where fans enjoy Starbucks VIA™, visit Starbucks interactive coffee community at www.starbucksVIA.com. See highlights from the last two weeks on YouTube including highlights of customer submissions, the first week's television ads or the Starbucks VIA™ Coast to Coast Road Trip. Earlier this month, comedian Erin Foley and Starbucks official Tweeter Brad Nelson set out to taste Starbucks VIA™ with customers through a coast-to-coast Starbucks VIA™ Road Trip, hitting 14 states and Vancouver, Canada. Follow their coffee-fueled adventures and antics on the Starbucks VIA® Road Trip webisode series at youtube.com/starbucks.

Convenience and Value

Starbucks VIA™ Ready Brew Decaf Italian Roast is pre-portioned into single-serve packets and is packaged in books of three or boxes of 12. The suggested retail price for the U.S. is $2.95 for a three-pack and $10.95 for a 12-pack, making a great cup of Starbucks® coffee available for less than $1 a cup.

About Starbucks

Since 1971, Starbucks Coffee Company has been committed to ethically sourcing and roasting the highest quality arabica coffee in the world. Today, with stores around the globe, the company is the premier roaster and retailer of specialty coffee in the world. Through our unwavering commitment to excellence and our guiding principles, we bring the unique Starbucks Experience to life for every customer through every cup. To share in the experience, please visit us in our stores or online at www.starbucks.com.

Photos/Multimedia Gallery Available: http://www.businesswire.com/cgi-bin/mmg.cgi?eid=6070157&lang=en

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