American vegans are protesting Starbucks for its “insane” institution of a “vegan tax” against non-dairy drinkers. The controversy stems from the coffee chain typically charging extra for plant-based milk options. It has led to sit-ins at Starbucks locations nationwide. PETA, the animal rights group, has organized many of the protests. The demonstrations began in December 2019, when PETA announced it was purchasing shares of Starbucks stock. The organization plans to pressure the company to stop “charging up to 80 cents extra for vegan milk". Starbucks considers substituting for vegan-friendly milk similar to adding extra flavoring or another espresso shot. PETA has claimed that this practice also punishes people who are lactose intolerant. In a December 2019 press release, the group said, "Many coffee drinkers are lactose intolerant. and everyone should be intolerant of cruelty to cows, which is why charging extra for vegan milks is hard to swallow"