Starbucks does use Arabica beans, although it claims that its beans are superior to those used by other companies. Arabica beans are used by the majority of coffee companies. However, according to Starbucks, its Arabica beans are grown at higher altitudes, the variable climate of which results in greater bean density.
Starbucks also states that its beans are hand-selected according to strict criteria for quality, discarding beans of the wrong size, color or density. The coffee is then subject to stringent taste-testing to ensure consistency in the final product.
Like many other coffee companies, Starbucks also has a stated commitment to trading fairly and responsibly sourcing its Arabica beans.