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Starbucks Doesn't Want You to Bring in Your Own Mug Because of Coronavirus

The coffee chain is trying to prevent the spread of COVID-19 by only using paper cups.

Amid this time of international crisis, Starbucks has decided to hit the pause button on allowing customers to use their reusable coffee mugs and cups in-store.

According to The New York Times, there are now 163 confirmed cases of COVID-19 (the disease caused by coronavirus) in the U.S., up from 104 on Tuesday. That figure, of course, excludes the hundreds of people across the country who likely have it but have yet to be tested or slipped through earlier screenings. With so much uncertainty, the coffee giant decided to take it upon itself to reduce the risk of having the virus spread by temporarily suspending the use of reusable cups in North American stores until further notice.

"We will continue to stay close to our partners and local health officials, and we are optimistic this will be a temporary situation," said Rossann Williams, Starbucks' president of company-operated businesses in the United States and Canada, in a letter posted to the company's stories & news page.

RELATED: 7 Ways to Protect Yourself from Coronavirus While Dining Out.

While it's a bummer you won't be able to use Starbucks' reusable cups, personal mugs from home, or "for here" ware, customers will still be able to receive a 10-cent discount on anyone who brings in their own cup or requests for "for here" ware.

Even more important, Starbucks will be increasing the frequency of cleanings at all of its stores, as the CDC says the virus is most transmissible through "respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes." It may even be possible to contract the disease by touching an object or a surface that has the virus on it and then proceeding to touch their mouth, nose, and potentially even their eyes.

As coronavirus begins to spread across the U.S., we are appreciative that large businesses such as Starbucks are taking the initiative to step it up with regards to sanitation and precaution. Here are other helpful Coronavirus Precautions You Must Take to steer clear of contracting COVID-19.

Eat This, Not That! is constantly monitoring the latest food news as it relates to COVID-19 in order to keep you healthy, safe, and informed (and answer your most urgent questions). Here are the precautions you should be taking at the grocery store, the foods you should have on hand, the meal delivery services and restaurant chains offering takeout you need to know about, and ways you can help support those in need. We will continue to update these as new information develops. Click here for all of our COVID-19 coverage, and sign up for our newsletter to stay up-to-date.
Cheyenne Buckingham
Cheyenne Buckingham is the former news editor of Eat This, Not That! Read more about Cheyenne
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