New York (CNN) Starbucks is changing its ice cubes. Do customers want a meltdown?
Customers who order cold drinks will now sip “nugget ice” in their drinks, ice cubes that are smaller than the chain’s current cubes.
Ice is a key ingredient for the coffee giant, especially since the icy handcrafted drinks now account for about 75% of sales. Ice is also apparently a flash point for its customers.
Initial reactions to the new ice cream on Reddit are mixed but passionate. Some note that it is chewier or flakier and claim that it is similar to the ice cream used on Sonic and the Coffee Bean. The so-called “pellet ice” has some fans, but other people worry that it will water down their drinks or change the texture of their Frappuccinos.
Nuggets don’t melt faster, the company said, and the switch to nuggets doesn’t mean customers will get less ice since baristas use the same ice scoop.
The company’s new iteration of ice has had a “resoundingly positive response” in its tests, it said.
Starbucks is revamping some of its drinks for the summer. Last week, it announced that a Refresher drink that is not diluted with water will cost an additional $1 because the company said it “requires additional ingredients.”
Refreshers are the chain’s popular range of non-coffee drinks, which are served cold with flavored juices and dried fruit pieces, plus milk, water or lemonade.
New Starbucks CEO Laxman Narasimhan sees room for improvement in the business, which includes installing new equipment. Starbucks also has a goal to halve its water consumption by 2030.
Starbucks said in a statement that the new ice machines use less water and will roll out to all stores over the next few years.
“There’s more work to be done to tailor our stores to the demand we’re seeing, advance our technology, improve how we innovate our equipment and also more fundamentally, how we get back to focusing on core operations and executing better,” Narasimhan said earlier this month in an earnings call.