Seattle, WA: Food Truck Given the Boot for Selling Non-Starbucks Coffee


There’s a coffee war brewing at the Starbucks Center in Seattle’s SODO neighborhood.

A food truck vendor was kicked off the property Thursday because he was selling coffee that was not Starbucks.

Starbucks Center

Food trucks are now open for business at the Starbucks Center parking lot, selling items from spicy tacos to barbecue ribs.

Josh Goldman showed his $85,000 Lucky Devil Doughnut Co. truck; his dad showed the contract allowing them to sell at the Starbucks Center.

“They checked with Starbucks and they tell us they got Starbucks’ ok to be there,” said Steven Goldman, Josh Goldman’s dad.

So Josh set up his truck Thursday morning, selling doughnuts and – what else with doughnuts – coffee.

“Some Starbucks executives got upset about that and saw that he was also selling drip coffee,” said Donya Johnson, Nitze-Stagen &Co.

A few hours into selling at the Starbucks Center, a property manager came out and told Josh to pack up his doughnuts and leave.

“When he came to us and asked if he could be here, he misrepresented himself because he only told me he was selling doughnuts, not that he also had coffee,” said Johnson.

Starbucks doesn’t own Starbucks Center, but it has a non-compete agreement with the owner. No other coffee sales are allowed.

“I think it’s the bully pushing around the little guy just because they can,” said Steven Goldman.

Property management says no, but Josh is willing to go back and just sell his donuts.

Josh is selling coffee from Lighthouse Roasters. Starbucks said it was the property manager’s decision to ask the doughnut truck to leave because they manage the food truck contracts.