I know vegans can be uber-sensitive sometimes, failing to even see the humor in an amusing Super Bowl ad. But I can see their side on this one. Much has been made of Ariana Grande’s new collaboration with Starbucks, the foamy Cloud Macchiato beverage. The “cloud” in your Ariana Grande coffee is made from egg white powder. Which is fine, unless you’re vegan (or have an egg allergy). But you know who’s supposedly vegan? Ariana Grande. People points out she professed in an interview several years ago that she doesn’t eat animal products because “I love animals more than I love most people.”
That isn’t even the Cloud Macchiato’s only violation against the animal kingdom: The bulk of it consists of espresso mixed with milk and cream. The caramel drizzle, if you go that route, has butter in it (I tried the cinnamon, found it to be like a candied sweet roll in beverage form, typical of Starbucks specialty drinks. The cloud was fun though. I am not vegan.)
Buzzfeed quotes baristas as saying that now people are coming to Starbucks expecting the drink to be vegan. Or requesting it with soy milk, as Grande suggested in a tweet, even though that still won’t make the beverage vegan, because of the egg powder.
There are enough animal-free milks right now (soy, almond, oat) for Grande to have easily pushed a vegan-friendly Starbucks option, as opposed to a beverage that her supposedly vegan self can’t even drink. Perhaps, as some of her fans are pointing out, she’s not vegan anymore. But then why would she push the soy version? And that non-vegan soy version will still cost extra for the speciality milk. Thank you, next coffee drink, Ariana Grande.