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Starbucks announced last week that it will introduce its own proprietary single-cup coffee maker laster this year. The item will be made by Kreuger, a German company, but Starbucks is not yet releasing pricing or technical details.

Advertising Age writes that “the news could be a threat to Green Mountain, with which Starbucks has a relationship. In March 2011, the company signed a deal with Green Mountain Coffee Roasters for the sale, manufacture and distribution of Starbucks and Tazo -- its tea brand -- in K-Cups, the dominant format in the single-serve market. Green Mountain has the patent on K-Cups and owns the Keurig machines for which they are used.”

Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz said that while Starbucks plans to offer only Starbucks-branded coffee for now, "we reserve the right to open the system to others, and we have not made that decision as of today."
KC's View:
A retailer friend of mine suggested the other day that this move was akin to Steve Jobs wanting to control every part of the Apple experience ... Schultz essentially seems to want the same thing for the Starbucks coffee experience.