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A deeper dive into the new Starbucks Oleato drink and the restaurant brand’s history

Examining the company brought to life by Howard Schultz and colored by his latest invention and anti-union beliefs


Last month, Starbucks announced it would be introducing Oleato drinks to certain parts of the U.S. These drinks, a combination of cold-pressed olive oil and coffee, have brought a great debate to the country — whether olive oil has a place at the coffee giant.

Howard Schultz, former CEO of Starbucks — and the driving force behind the brand’s growth since 1986 — had a big part in this invention. Much like the beginnings of Starbucks, which was inspired by a trip to Italy and the espresso shops of Europe, Schultz turned to Italy for this drink.

This time, Schultz turned to Sicily for his invention, the last of his before new CEO Laxman Narasimhan took over the reins of America’s largest coffee shop.

The chain hasn’t been out of the spotlight. In the past year and a half, the Seattle-based company has seen almost 300 stores unionize, and the leadership at Starbucks has been loudly anti-union. Congress recently interrogated Howard Schultz about alleged union-busting tactics at Starbucks.

But Starbucks, as it has before, will continue to forge a path forward. Despite the pressure from unionization, the chain is seeing record sales across its 36,000 stores in the U.S. each quarter.

Watch the video above for a brief history of Starbucks and a deep dive into Schultz’s latest invention for his chain.

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