Vegan actress and activist Alicia Silverstone, author of The Kind Diet, joined voices with PETA in protesting Starbucks' practice of charging extra for non-dairy milk in its drinks, according to a press release published by PETA.  The organization has been encouraging consumers and high-profile names to protest and boycott Starbucks around the country in recent weeks, hoping that the groundswell of criticism will pressure the coffee company to drop its surcharge on non-dairy milk alternatives.

Starbucks charges from 26 to 80 cents more for soy and almond milk in their coffees and lattes, despite previously urging its customers to avoid dairy milk. The irony is that other coffee restaurants, including Peets and Pret a Porter and many smaller chains, offer almond or oat, soy or other milk alternatives for free or simply leaves them out for the consumers to add themselves -- the same way they would cream or half and half.

Silverstone — who is an honorary PETA director — will request that Starbucks commit to dropping the "vegan tax" as the fees are known, at its virtual annual meeting today.

“Starbucks is paying lip service to environmentalism while penny-pinching at the expense of its customers, cows, and the planet,” said PETA Executive Vice President Tracy Reiman.

“PETA and Alicia Silverstone are telling Starbucks’ shareholders that if they’re really serious about reducing the company’s carbon footprint, they’ll ask it to drop the vegan surcharge immediately.”

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