The best-selling Starbucks coffee company has patented a secret ingredient that may have helped the world’s first human bodybuilders achieve their muscular physique.
The secret ingredient in the drink, called collagen, was first identified in a 2012 study by Harvard nutritionist and Harvard Medical School Professor of Medicine Dr. J. Christopher Wittenberg.
The ingredient was developed by Starbucks, and its first commercial use was in its popular ice cream and chocolate bars, which were introduced in 2009.
Starbucks says it is the only major coffee company in the world that has patented this collagen-based drink.
The company says the collagen drink, which contains no sugar, alcohol or caffeine, contains more than 3,000 amino acids.
The drink is made with the milk of the rhizome, a tree-like plant, and is marketed as a supplement for athletes, dieters and weight-loss experts.
It has been sold in countries like Australia, Brazil, Germany, India, Japan, Mexico and the Philippines.
“Starbucks has been exploring the potential for a novel collagen supplement since at least 2006, when it began developing an experimental, and at that time very small, formulation of a naturally-occurring amino acid that had the potential to increase muscle mass and strength in humans,” the company said in a statement.
“In 2010, we launched our first commercial product, the Sprouted-Ace, a combination of a sugar-free, plant-based protein powder and an amino acid-rich beverage.”
The Sprouted Ace is made from soy milk, soy protein isolate and whey protein concentrate, which is a combination that contains both sugar and sugar-containing amino acids and is made in a plant-food factory in California.
The protein powder, which has been in the pipeline for several years, was recently introduced in the United States and Canada.
The drink contains 2.5 grams of protein per serving, the company says, and the amount of protein in the Sprout Ace is approximately 0.5 percent.
Starbucks claims that the Sprouting Ace contains about 30 percent more protein than a cup of plain regular-size coffee.
It is unclear if the Sprouts Ace contains any other ingredients that would make it more effective.
It does not contain any artificial colors, preservatives or sweeteners.
Starbursts CEO and co-founder Howard Schultz, who has been at the helm of the company since 2003, has been a regular critic of the federal government’s ban on genetically modified food.
In 2015, the coffee giant was accused of being a major contributor to climate change by its own CEO.
In January, Starbucks announced that it was cutting about 200 jobs.
In February, the Seattle-based company announced it was expanding its U.S. operations by 5,000 employees.
It also announced a $5 million investment in a U.K. company to create a global supply chain for its product.
Starbuck is expected to start producing its Sprouted Elixir in the coming months.
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