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Starbucks Demonstrates Commitment to Stakeholder Engagement in Fiscal 2004 Corporate Social Responsibility Annual Report

Published 03-25-05

Submitted by Starbucks Corporation

SEATTLE -- As part of its ongoing commitment to balance fiscal responsibility with the goals of enhancing people's lives and protecting the environment, Starbucks Coffee Company (Nasdaq: SBUX) has released its fourth Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Annual Report. Entitled "Striking a Balance," the report underscores Starbucks approach to integrating CSR throughout its business operations and details the Company's activities in fiscal year 2004 that demonstrate how Starbucks provides social, environmental and economic benefits to the global communities in which it operates.

"Global issues of environmental sustainability, ethical business practices and poverty weigh heavily on the minds of individuals and corporations alike," said Jim Donald, Starbucks chief executive officer designate. "As a global company, Starbucks is working to ensure that our business and operations address these significant worldwide issues, as appropriate. Our CSR report provides not only a summary of our CSR practices and activities over the past year, but is also a tool that drives future changes, improvements and new initiatives in our business."

In its continuing effort to provide increased transparency and a balanced account of the Company's achievements and challenges, Starbucks engaged a variety of stakeholder groups for feedback and input on the previous year's CSR Annual Report. The diverse group of stakeholders included non-governmental and governmental organizations representing human rights and environmental concerns, socially responsible investors, academics, CSR business leaders, Starbucks partners (employees) and customers. Through this feedback, which incorporated direct concerns and questions from some of Starbucks toughest critics, this year's CSR Annual Report provides a more candid and in-depth account of the Company's CSR successes and challenges especially with regard to its coffee buying practices, the impacts of its rapid growth on local communities and its approach to being an environmentally responsible company.

"We are gratified that Starbucks has actively sought our input on their coffee buying practices," said Raymond C. Offenheiser, President, Oxfam America. "We commend Starbucks for disclosing exactly how much Fair Trade Certified™ coffee it has bought and its goal to purchase 10 million pounds in fiscal 2005, as well as its commitment to small-scale farmers through its progressive low-interest loan program."

In addition to greatly enhanced stakeholder engagement, Starbucks fiscal 2004 CSR Annual Report includes information about the Company's CSR key performance indicators and targets, expanded coverage of corporate governance and an increased focus on informing readers about Starbucks socially responsible coffee purchasing practices. The report also includes more data about the positive economic impacts Starbucks has on coffee farming communities and local communities where its stores are located. For the third consecutive year, Starbucks engaged Moss Adams LLP, a certified public accounting firm, to independently verify the report.

In order to provide additional opportunities for stakeholder engagement and feedback, Starbucks will host a web conference for key stakeholder groups. Retiring chief executive officer Orin Smith will present the results and key highlights from the CSR Annual Report and answer questions regarding Starbucks CSR practices and global issues addressed in the report. In recognition of Smith's commitment to the importance of social responsibility for the global community, the Starbucks fiscal 2004 CSR Annual Report has been dedicated to him.

"As a publicly traded company doing business in 35 countries, Starbucks operations extend to a diverse variety of stakeholders," said Sandra Taylor, Starbucks senior vice president, Corporate Social Responsibility. "It is our goal to give back to the communities in which we operate and to be a good neighbor, engaging and working with stakeholders on a variety of issues and programs. We hope this report shows our commitment to continuing to strive for further transparency in our CSR efforts."

Starbucks CSR Annual Report was officially released as an online document at the Company's Annual Shareholders' Meeting in February 2005 and is available at To request a printed copy, call 1-800-23-LATTE. Starbucks values ongoing feedback from its stakeholders. Readers are encouraged to complete an online survey at

Starbucks Coffee Company is the leading retailer, roaster and brand of specialty coffee in the world, with more than 9,000 retail locations in North America, Latin America, Europe, the Middle East and the Pacific Rim. The Company is committed to offering the highest quality coffee and the Starbucks Experience while conducting its business in ways that produce social, environmental and economic benefits for communities in which it does business.

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Starbucks Corporation

Starbucks Corporation

It's the way we do business Contributing positively to our communities and environment is so important to Starbucks that it's a guiding principle of our mission statement. We jointly fulfill this commitment with partners (employees), at all levels of the company, by getting involved together to help build stronger communities and conserve natural resources.

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