Coffee is the lifeblood of Starbucks, naturally, but the brand’s offerings go well beyond caffeine and the occasional baked good. Protein boxes, snack bars, and even fresh fruit have been on the menu at Starbucks for years—until recently, that is.
A representative for Starbucks confirmed to The Takeout that as of May 2022, the coffee chain does not offer fresh or frozen bananas. Though Starbucks had long sold single bananas for roughly $1-$1.50 near the pastry case, the company said the decision was made after evaluating the menu, a standard process at any such quick service business.
It’s worth noting that a Google search for “Starbucks banana” will yield a link to the menu where the item is still listed. However, once you input your location or try to add the banana to your order, an error message will appear letting you know it is not available.
Avid Starbucks-goers may have already caught this, or maybe not—it took us a full 15 months to notice, after all. Bananas were often placed right by the cash register or somewhere close to the refrigerated applesauce and protein bars. Considering the popularity of drive-thru ordering and mobile order pickup options, it wouldn’t be completely out of pocket to guess that bananas likely weren’t ordered very often by those customers; it’s not the most visible part of the digital menu. Bananas seemingly comprise more of the brand’s collection of impulse buys at the counter.
Starbucks employees (or Reddit users alleging to work for the brand) offered up some of their own theories online for the axed bananas. In a Reddit thread from two years ago, one user marked as a Starbucks supervisor wrote, “I stopped ordering bananas a long ass time ago due to their poor sales and fruit fly issues that develop from them.” This implies that shift supervisors have some level of control over which snacks they order for their store. It makes sense that bananas wouldn’t always make the cut.
Another Reddit user also marked as a Starbucks supervisor explained that stocking bananas is a waste: “We get 24, sell 1 or 2, then throw out the rest when they get gross and then repeat,” they said.
Given how long the (sparse) online chatter has been going on, it seems that Starbucks began this quiet phase-out over time, and bananas left with barely a whimper. Our condolences to anyone looking for a potassium hit along with their morning cup of joe.