NEW YORK, NY - NOVEMBER 12: A holiday Starbucks cup is viewed on November 12, 2015 in New York City. The coffee giant has come under criticism by some for leaving any Christmas or traditional holiday signage off of the red cup. While Starbucks has said there is no cultural or political message to the design, critics claim that the company doesn't want to offend non-Christians or those who don't celebrate Christmas. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
Cox Media Group National Content Desk
Starbucks debuted its annual holiday cup on Thursday.
But instead of offering customers one festive cup, the coffee company released 13 cups with different designs. All the cups are red with white designs and the company's green and white logo. Some designs feature hand-drawn snowflakes, reindeer, Christmas lights, candy canes, ornaments and Santa Claus riding his sleigh.
According to Starbucks, the cup designs were created by customers from around the world. The designs were submitted to the company via its #RedCupContest last year.
"We crafted coffee. You made it art," Starbucks wrote in a promotional video with the hashtag #RedCups.
Customers complained last year that Starbucks' plain red cups were not festive enough and criticized the company for attempting to be politically correct by taking the Christmas theme off the cups.
The coffee giant's vice president of design and content, Jeffrey Fields, told Us Weekly that the plain cups were meant to embrace "the simplicity and the quietness" of the holiday season.
More recently, Starbucks debuted a green cup that features a mosaic of dozens of people drawn in one continuous stroke. The cup, meant to encourage unity and symbolize "shared values and the need to be good to each other," was criticized when customers believed that the cup was replacing the company's usual red cups.
"All these faces on my green cup and not a one of them looks like Santa or Jesus. Why do you still hate Christmas?" one Twitter user asked the company. Another said the design was "political brainwashing," saying: "I want snowflakes."
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