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Friday, May 14, 2010
New Frappuccino Recipe Deletes Dairy, Adds Gluten
Coffee City | New Frappuccino recipe deletes dairy, adds gluten | Seattle Times Newspaper

Posted by Melissa Allison

Frappuccino fans who can't tolerate lactose are in luck. Frappuccino Light fans who can't tolerate gluten will have to find another drink.

Starbucks' new Frappuccinos no longer have milk in their base mixes, which means that if you order one with soy instead of cow's milk, it's practically a dairy-free beverage. It's not officially designated vegan, because Starbucks says there is the potential for cross-contamination in stores and in manufacturing facilities.

The new base mix for light Frappuccinos now includes gluten, a depressing fact for fans with celiac disease and other forms of gluten intolerance. The regular Frappuccino base mix does not have gluten as an ingredient, but is not officially designated gluten-free because of the risk of cross-contamination. Customers who want a reduced calorie Frappuccino but are sensitive to gluten can request non-fat milk in a regular Frappuccino, the company said.

Meg Perrine, a former Frappuccino Light fan in Kirkland, has visited 12 Starbucks in Arizona and Washington since the new recipe started rolling out, and no barista or manager she talked to knew that gluten had been added to the light base mix. One barista looked at the label and told her it was gluten free, although gluten was on the ingredient list. She has a friend who has blogged about it and gives readers a link to a comment page.

"They knew when they put this in that it's going make thousands of people sick," Perrine said.

She doesn't worry about cross-contamination in stores because, "I ask for a clean pitcher, and they do it for me every time. The baristas are sweet. They know I have celiac disease."

She doesn't worry about cross-contamination at the manufacturers' level because of rules about cleaning the machines and lines between products.

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