Starbucks Announces Global Greener Stores Commitment, New Roastery in Italy

Starbucks plans to open 10,000 “greener stores” by 2025. Over the next year, the coffee giant intends to develop an accredited program to audit all existing company-operated stores in the U.S. and Canada via a comprehensive framework for environmentally friendly design.

“We know that designing and building green stores is not only responsible — it is cost-effective as well,” Kevin Johnson, president and CEO of Starbucks said in a statement. “The energy and passion of our green apron partners has inspired us to find ways to operate a greener store that will generate even greater cost savings while reducing impact.”

The Starbucks Greener Stores initiative will focus on energy efficiency and water stewardship by deploying technologies and practices intended to deliver 30 percent water savings and 25 percent energy savings compared with previous store design standards. In addition, the company plans to source renewable energy equivalent to 100 percent of the electricity it uses in its U.S. and Canadian stores, and it plans to design and operate stores to create a comfortable experience for partners and customers with a focus on improved lighting, air quality and temperature.

The initiative will also focus on the use of responsibly and sustainably sourced materials as well as on waste diversion/reduction and sustainable culture-building. Starbucks projects it will save an incremental $50 million in utilities over the next 10 years as a result of these changes.

In other news, Starbucks has opened its first store in Italy. The Milan Starbucks marks the third location for the chain’s upscale roastery concept, and the company will start to open more traditional cafes in Italy later this year, taking care to design each store with respect to the local community.

Located at the historic turn-of-the-century Palazzo delle Poste building on Piazza Cordusio, the 25,500-square-foot space showcases the theater of coffee roasting, brewing and mixology using small-batch Reserve coffees and an over-the-top design that pays homage to the Italian espresso culture that inspired Howard Schultz to create the Starbucks Experience 35 years ago.

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At the heart of the vibrant space sits a fully functioning Scolari coffee roaster, manufactured just miles outside of the center of Milan. To the right, customers will find the main bar, where classic espresso beverages mingle with cutting-edge coffee innovation. The wood-fronted bar features fluting, which echoes a motif found in Italian architecture throughout history, and is topped with marble sourced from the world-famous quarries of Tuscany. Upstairs on the mezzanine, customers can discover Arriviamo Bar — where mixologists are on hand to create specialty cocktails behind a 30-foot-long marble bar carved from a single block of Calacatta Macchia Vecchia. And finally, to the left, customers will see upon entering a Princi Bakery, complete with a wood-fired oven, built on-site by hand, brick by brick, using a crew of masons and artisans. Throughout the space, light filters in via an all-glass ceiling, while a floor-to-ceiling, wall-to-wall visual showcases Starbucks history. Outside, patrons can enjoy coffee on the patio inspired by European cafes.

“From the palladiana flooring that was chiseled by hand to the bright green clackerboard made by Italian craftsman Solari, everything you see in the Roastery is intentional, offering moments of discovery and transparency,” said Liz Muller, Starbucks’ chief design officer.

The 360-degree walk-around view into the brewing process shows green coffee beans being poured out of burlap sacks and continuing through the roaster and cooling trays. The 22-foot-high bronze cask at the center of it all allows a glimpse inside the de-gassing chamber.

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