National coffee powerhouse Starbucks Coffee Co. recently announced the expansion of its coffee empire to Norway, Morocco and now even into the skies over North America.
Starting this month, Alaska Airlines, based in Seattle, began serving Starbucks coffee to passengers free of charge. For years the low-fare airline had served their passengers Seattle’s Best Coffee, which is a smaller coffee brewer.
Seattle’s Beast is also owned by Starbucks’ parent company, Starbucks Corp. in Seattle. However Alaska Airlines has grown and is now serving 61 destinations, including new service this summer to Santa Barbara and Bozeman, Mont. The Airline thus decided it was time for them to switch to a coffee brand with national name recognition.
“We made a decision to go with the brand that is well known to our customers,” Alaska Airlines spokeswoman Bobbie Egan said.
However, Alaska is not the first airline to carry the coffee. The move also was made to offer a consistent coffee experience for passengers who fly Horizon Air, a subsidiary owned by Alaska’s parent company, Alaska Air Group. Horizon has been serving Starbucks for 22 years.
On another note Alaska is not the first airline to offer Starbucks. United Air Lines has been serving Starbucks since 1995. Japanese carrier All Nippon Airways started carrying the brew in 2010.
Starbucks has also partnered up with Barnes & Noble bookstores and Kroger grocery locations to install in-store Starbucks bars.