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Starbucks to limit seating, restrict orders to mobile or drive-thru in some stores

Starbucks to limit seating, restrict orders to mobile or drive-thru in some stores
© getty

Starbucks will limit seating and restrict service to mobile and drive-thru orders at some locations amid the coronavirus outbreak, the coffee chain announced Thursday.

“At Starbucks, we believe it is our role and responsibility during this time to prioritize two things: the health and well-being of our customers and partners while also playing a constructive role in supporting local health officials and government leaders as they work to contain the virus,” CEO Kevin Johnson said in a statement.

“Through that lens, we will continue to make decisions with vigilance and courage informed by the latest science-based information and guided by Our Mission and Values,” he added.

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Johnson noted that the company has based its response on steps it took in China, where the outbreak originated, saying 90 percent of Chinese locations have since reopened. He added that the company will also expand catastrophe pay to workers.

“As a last resort, we will close a store if we feel it is in the best interest of our customers and partners, or if we are directed to do so by government authorities," he added. "In any such situation, we expect store disruption to be temporary."

Last week, Starbucks announced a moratorium on the use of reusable cups.