Fecal Bacteria Found in UK Cafés’ Ice Drinks


A recent study has found fecal bacteria in ice coffee drinks in Starbucks, Caffe Nero and Costa Coffee in the UK.

The Finding

According to a study by BBC’s “Watchdog” program, samples of ice coffee drinks from Starbucks, Caffe Nero and Costa Coffee were found to have a “concerning level” of fecal bacteria.

Costa Coffee was hit the hardest with this finding, as 7 of the 10 samples from their store were contaminated with the bacteria. Caffe Nero and Starbucks had “fecal coliforms” in 3 of the 10 samples that were tested.

The head of Chartered Institute for Environmental Health, Tony Lewis, said that these bacteria types are “the source of human disease,” and that “they should not be present at any level — never mind the significant numbers found.”

The Cafes On the Finding

Costa Coffee issued a statement, saying: “We were disappointed with the findings, especially as these stores are all rated Very Good with the top Hygiene Rating of 5.”

“It is extremely important to us that all our stores operate to high standards of hygiene at all times and we take it very seriously when any store fails to meet these standards. … Following these results we have taken immediate action to update our ice handling procedures.”

A spokesman from Starbucks also said that the company takes hygiene “extremely seriously” and that “nothing is more important.”

“We have moved quickly to conduct our own investigation into the claims about the stores,” he added. “All employees nationwide have received updated training on our high standards of hygiene including ice handling.”

A Caffe Nero spokesman said: “A thorough investigation is now under way and the appropriate action will be taken.”

“99 per cent of our stores are rated as very good, good or satisfactory by their local EHO (environmental health officer) – making us one of the most highly rated businesses on the high street,” he said.