Coffee cup controversy: Is holiday Starbucks design anti-Christmas?

Starbucks' 2015 holiday-themed cups have prompted controversy. (WISH Photo)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Starbucks’ holiday-themed coffee cups are prompting a heated debate.

The coffee chain introduces a special cup design each year for the holiday season.

This year’s design is plain red, prompting outrage from some who argue the lack of decoration equals a lack of Christmas spirit and a deliberate attempt to stomp out Christian symbols.

“Do you realize that Starbucks wanted to take Christ and Christmas off of their brand new cups? That’s why they’re just plain red,” Joshua Feuerstein claims in a viral Facebook video.

Posted Nov. 5, the video has been viewed more than 10 million times in three days.

Starbucks responded in a statement to Breitbart, saying: “Starbucks has become a place of sanctuary during the holidays. We’re embracing the simplicity and the quietness of it. It’s [a] more open way to usher in the holiday.”

On the company’s website, Stabucks posted ‘The Story Behind the Design of Starbucks Red Holiday Cups for 2015‘:

When red Starbucks cups return, it’s a signal that the holiday season is drawing near.

This year’s iconic red Starbucks cup features a two-toned ombré design, with a bright poppy color on top that shades into a darker cranberry below.

“We have anchored the design with the classic Starbucks holiday red that is bright and exciting,” said Jeffrey Fields, Starbucks vice president of Design & Content. “The ombré creates a distinctive dimension, fluidity and weightedness.”

Since 1997 Starbucks has served its holiday beverages in a unique cup, starting with a jazz-themed design in jewel tones of deeper reds, greens and blues. Every year since, the cup has told a story of the holidays by featuring symbols of the season from vintage ornaments and hand-drawn reindeer to modern vector-illustrated characters. Taking a cue from customers who have been doodling designs on cups for years (Starbucks held a contest to support this creativity) this year’s design is another way we are inviting our customers to create their own stories on our cups.

“In the past, we have told stories with our holiday cups designs,” said Fields. “This year we wanted to usher in the holidays with a purity of design that welcomes all of our stories.”

In the nearly two decades since the first red Starbucks cup, the company has grown from 1,400 stores in a handful of countries to more than 23,000 stores in 68 markets around the world.

“Starbucks has become a place of sanctuary during the holidays,” he said. “We’re embracing the simplicity and the quietness of it. It’s more open way to usher in the holiday.”

Creating a culture of belonging, inclusion and diversity is one of the core values of Starbucks, and each year during the holidays we aim to bring our customers an experience that inspires the spirit of the season. We will continue to embrace and welcome customers from all backgrounds and religions in our stores around the world.

For some, the coffee cup is nothing more than that — a simple coffee cup void of controversy.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s