Starbucks Hit With Pumpkin Latte Shortage

Customers wrestle with 'depression' over missing drink
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 5, 2012 1:47 PM CDT
Starbucks Hit With Pumpkin Latte Shortage
A Starbucks drink waits for a customer to pick it up as barista Josh Barrow prepares another at left, Friday, April 27, 2012, in Seattle.   (AP Photo/Ted S. Warren)

(Newser) – Sound the alarm: There's a crisis in Starbucks land. Customers nationwide have been devastated by a shortage of Pumpkin Spice Lattes, an autumn-only favorite. "My world almost ended this morning when the local Starbucks told me they were out of Pumpkin Spice Latte," tweeted one fan. Another store visitor says he "just left, depressed." Starbucks has hyped up the drink with campaigns including a Haiku contest, and this year, demand has soared, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Starbucks says there's no overall shortage of the key syrup ingredient, but notes that some stores suffer setbacks because of less frequent deliveries. "In a pumpkin emergency," however, shops can "place an extra order" for the sauce. Meanwhile, baristas are running to neighboring locations to grab supplies, and some are serving an instant version of the stuff. An Austin man managed to sell a $6.95 box of the instant version for $17 on eBay; other customers are hoarding it for themselves. Love for the pumpkin latte is no joke, as proven in one Haiku: "I love pumpkin spice/ Do not even need a cup/ Connect the IV." (Read more lattes stories.)

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