Health

American Heart Association At Odds With Starbucks Drink

| by Alex Scarr

After Starbucks rolled out their "Unicorn Frappuccino" April 19, reactions to the pink and purple concoction were not entirely positive.

In particular, the Stratford Health Department in Stratford, Connecticut, called out the drink for its high sugar content, according to the Connecticut Post. The Health Department wrote on their Facebook page a short warning, saying that while the drink "may be pretty to look at, it's loaded with 59 grams of sugar. That is over two times the amount of sugar recommended by the American Heart Association."

The American Heart Association recommends a sugar intake for women limited to 25 grams per day, while men should limit their sugar load to 36 grams.

The ingredients list for the drink contains four different kinds of syrup: frappuccino syrup, mango syrup, vanilla syrup, and classic syrup. The drink packs 410 calories in a 16-ounce serving and is topped with whipped cream and a colorful dust that Starbucks calls "fairy powder." It contains no coffee.

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The "Unicorn Frap" caused quite the stir over social media upon its release, with many enthralled by its unnaturally loud color and some claiming that the drink changes flavors from sweet to sour.

The Washington Post described it tasting like "sour birthday cake and Instagram likes," among other amusing analogies.

"Really, it does not matter what candies and medicines and emotions these colored powders taste like. This drink exists only to be Instagrammed, hashtag unicorn emoji, hashtag magical." The author also mentioned the acute feelings of shame she felt upon drinking it as a grown woman.

"I guess there’s some mango in there, although it’s overshadowed by a mouth-puckering sour flavor and immediately forgotten in the aftermath of a long-lasting, tongue-coating Robitussin aftertaste."

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The drink was made available for only a few days, with Starbucks ending the promotion April 23. For some baristas, the end couldn't come quickly enough.

In a video rant posted to his Twitter page, Colorado barista Braden Burson pleaded with his followers to not order the drink, as it's complicated and messy to make.

"Please don’t get it!" Burson said in the video. “I have unicorn crap all in my hair and on my nose. I have never been so stressed out in my entire life. If you love us as baristas, don't order it." Burson has since deleted his Twitter account and reportedly received a call from Starbucks asking "to talk about his experience and how to make it better."

Burson says he "never meant to downgrade the drink," but was rather describing his frustration about making several drinks in a short period of time.

Sources: Connecticut Post, The Washington Post (23) / Photo credit: Pixabay

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