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Starbucks removed both fresh and frozen bananas from its US menus in May 2022.Other chains have been streamlining their menus by removing complicated items.Bananas aren’t complicated. But Starbucks’ strategy focuses on complex drinks customizations.
If you fancy picking up a banana with your vanilla sweet cream cold brew, you’re out of luck.
Starbucks has stopped selling bananas, removing both fresh and frozen bananas from its US menus in May 2022, a spokesperson for the coffee giant told Insider. They’re listed as unavailable on the company’s website, too.
The fact that the move didn’t appear to be widely known until recent reports by The Takeout and other publications suggests that consumers didn’t care about the change, or perhaps didn’t even notice it. Starbucks previously gave customers the option to have bananas blended into their beverages.
Some Reddit users who say they worked at Starbucks stores said the bananas would sell poorly, go “gross,” and attract fruit flies. Some said that staff would take the softer bananas home at the end of their shift to make banana bread with.
A few said that their stores made the move to discontinue bananas before Starbucks management decided to stop sales nationally. Some said that staff would take the softer bananas home at the
Restaurants have been streamlining their menus
Other chains have been removing complicated items from their menus to cut back on preparation times, meaning customers get their orders more quickly and restaurants can reduce their labor costs. Many used the pandemic as an opportunity to overhaul their menus, with McDonald’s quietly cutting salads from its menus in 2020.
Subway in recent years has also tried to promote standardized sandwiches rather than heavily-customizable ones, which can slow orders down. When Chipotle introduced its most-recent limited-edition protein option, Chicken al Pastor, it essentially gave a facelift to the adobe chicken already available on its menu, just adding an al pastor marinade.
Starbucks, in contrast, is known for the complexity of its coffees and cold drinks, with customers able to modify their drinks with an almost endless array of milks, syrups, and toppings. This is much to the ire of some baristas, who say that this slows down order times and that customers can be rude when their drinks aren’t made correctly, but it drives customers to Starbucks who want personalized beverages. Modifiers bring in more than $1 billion in revenues annual for the company.
“As a standard course of business, we continually evaluate the items on our menu, using various criteria to ensure we are meeting the needs of our customers and our business priorities,” the spokesperson said when asked about Starbucks’ decision to remove bananas.