According to sources Starbucks Corp said on friday it will close most of its company operated cafes across North America for two weeks, limiting its services to drive-throughs, to help stem the spread of the highly contagious coronavirus. "Let's be real. Lattes aren't 'essential'," Rossann Williams, president of US company-operated and canada businesses, said in a letter.
She said "But in times of crisis, the government asks convenient food and beverage outlets to remain open when possible for pickup, Drive Thru, or delivery."Exceptions to the closure would be made for cafes serving in or around hospitals and health care centres.Starbucks, which owns almost all US stores, said its licensed partners would make independent decisions about whether to close their stores, but said it would pay all store partners for the next 30 days, regardless of that decision.
The move ramps up efforts by the world's largest coffee chain to increase social distancing, expanding closures beyond the universities, malls and high risk areas it announced several days ago. As the virus spreads at a rapid pace across the united states, cafe and restaurant operators have shut their doors or limited services to delivery and take-away. New York state, Illinois and Connecticut on friday all followed california in directing residents to stay at home in the most sweeping social distancing measures yet imposed.