A snack company based in Carlsbad, Calif., is claiming Starbucks breached a contract with it, leading it to struggle financially.
Eleven shareholders of Mellace Family Brands (MFB), which produced Mama Mellace's Chocolate and Mama Mellace's Organics snacks, among others, filed a lawsuit last week against Starbucks Corporation, saying complaints from Starbucks about Mellace products were actually due to a gas leak at a Starbucks facility. The shareholders allege that because of Starbucks' breach of contract, the company has suffered damages "in an amount to be proved at trial including, but not limited to, costs of business improvement, ongoing lost business while operating and foreseeable lost future profits, all in an amount exceeding $20 million." Zack Hutson, spokesman for Starbucks Coffee Company, said the company had discontinued business with Mellace Family Brands due to "ongoing quality issues." Hutson said Starbucks chooses its suppliers, of which it has 14,000 globally, by inspecting their "quality, service and value." "We're committed to meeting and exceeding the high expectations of our customers," Hutson said.Read »