25 spoons of sugar in your Starbucks or Costa coffee. Are you surprised?

What do you think makes that venti caramel macchiato taste so sweet?

Coffee chains Costa, Starbucks and Cafe Nero are being pulled into the spotlight because of that “staggering” 20-25 spoonfuls of sugar found in some of their offerings.

Coffee chains Costa, Starbucks and Cafe Nero are being pulled into the spotlight because of that “staggering” 20-25 spoonfuls of sugar found in some of their offerings.

 

Main street coffee giants are serving hot drinks with a lot of sugar in them. A “staggering” amount of sugar, according to a UK charity. Are you shocked? Or even surprised?

Coffee chains Costa, Starbucks and Cafe Nero are being pulled into the spotlight because of that “staggering” 20-25 spoonfuls of sugar found in some of their offerings. But, again, are you really that surprised?

What do you think makes that venti caramel macchiato taste so sweet? Or the extra-large white hot chocolate mocha with extra whipped cream? Or in fact the endless bottles of flavourings that can be added in dashes and dollops ... for a small additional cost.

Coffee shops are selling products that consumers buy. They sell what makes them money. And apparently sugar sells.

Does your hot drink have more sugar than a can of Coke?

In both Costa and Starbucks, calorie counts sit alongside the prices of each drink. It’s easy to see that a black coffee - with its 10 calories - is the low-sugar option when you need your morning (afternoon, or evening) hit. However adding a sugar syrup flavouring will do just that - add sugar.

The coffee companies have been quick to respond to the Action on Sugar research, which analysed 131 hot drinks. A Starbucks spokeswoman said the chain had “committed to reduce added sugar” by 25 per cen tby the end of 2020 in its “indulgent drinks”.

Kerry Parkin, Costa’s head of communications, said the chain had already taken “significant steps” to reduce the sugar content of its drinks. The company would be setting salt and sugar reduction targets for 2020, she said.

A Caffe Nero spokeswoman said: “We have already made changes to reduce the sugar content of some of our iced drinks for summer 2016 by over 10 per cent”.

So yes, these giants are selling drinks with more sugar than the nine teaspoons that’s in Coca-Cola, but it is consumers that are buying and drinking them.

Just because an dessert drink is available across the road doesn’t mean we should drink one every day. And when they tickle our sweet taste buds and have caramel, cream, vanilla,signature and indulgent in their name, can we be that surprised?

For information, that caramel machiato should taste like at least eight teaspoons of sugar and that white chocolate mocha with whipped cream ? 18, plus the extra cream. And, if you are interested, Costa’s chai latte comes in at 20 teaspoons of the white stuff.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.