(Updated) How the Industry is Coming Together Amid the Coronavirus Pandemic

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Hospitality professionals and several brands are stepping up in a big way to support bartenders, servers and other industry workers.

Ours is an industry of service and dedication, and we’re seeing everyone band together in service of those who are overwhelmed emotionally and financially.

The speed with which our industry is reacting has been particularly heartening, and it’s occurring across the globe.

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Restaurant Workers’ Community Foundation

The RWCF has created the COVID19 Crisis Relief Fund to provide assistance to restaurant workers. The foundation is also offering interest-free business loans through the relief fund. People who can donate to the fund can do so by clicking this link.

SipScience

This analytics company serves the hospitality industry by providing real-world data. Now, they’re serving the industry through a GoFundMe campaign with the goal of raising $100,000 for bar and restaurant workers. You can learn more and donate to the campaign here.

One Fair Wage

This non-profit organization advocates for the termination of the sub-minimum wage for people who work for tips. OFW is seeking to raise $213,000—a nod to the federal tipped minimum wage of $2.13 per hour—via the Mightycause platform for tipped workers and service workers. Learn more and donate by clicking here.

Another Round, Another Rally

This organization supports everyone in the hospitality industry: bartenders, bar backs, servers, hosts, chefs, cooks, sommeliers, bussers, dishwashers, cleaning staff, managers, etc. The ARAR emergency assistance fund is providing $500 relief grants to hospitality workers. To apply, click here. To make a donation, click here.

United States Bartenders’ Guild

The USBG is offering emergency assistance to bartenders through the USBG National Charity Foundation and help of Jameson. People in a position to donate to the USBG NCH can do so by clicking here. Speaking of Jameson…

Jameson

The best-known Irish whiskey producer donated $500,000 to the United States Bartenders’ Guild to help bartenders who now find themselves out of work. On top of that, Jameson is matching donations to the USBG National Charity Foundation through March 31, 2020 up to $100,000. Click here to donate.

Bacardí

The company and other brands within Bacardí's portfolio have committed to donating $3 million to several industry-supporting relief organizations, including Another Round, Another Rally; CORE; the James Beard Foundation; Restaurant Workers’ Community Foundation; and Tales of the Cocktail Foundation.

Diageo

The drinks giant has pledged $1,000,000 to the USBG Bartender Emergency Assistance Fund (maintained by the USBG NCH) to support hospitality workers throughout the country. Click here to donate or apply for a grant.

Patrón

Children Of Restaurant Employees (CORE), the James Beard Foundation and Another Round, Another Rally will receive a combined $1,000,000 from Patrón. The company has pledged to provide relief for families, individuals, and business owners.

Beam Suntory and Southern Glazer's Wine & Spirits

These two leaders in premium spirits production and distribution have announced they will be donating a combined $1,000,000 to the USBG Bartender Emergency Assistance Fund and the RWCF COVID19 Crisis Relief Fund.

Tito's Handmade Vodka

In addition to preparing to produce hand sanitizer, Tito's is donating $1 million to four charitable organizations: CORE, the Southern Smoke Foundation Emergency Relief Fund that provides assistance to F&B workers throughout the nation, the USBG Bartender Emergency Assistance Fund, and World Central Kitchen.

Ryan Reynolds & Aviation Gin

Deadpool himself announced that from now until May 1, 2020, 30 percent of the proceeds from online Aviation Gin sales will go the USBG's Bartender Emergency Assistance Fund, dubbing the relief campaign “Tip Your Bartenders." Reynolds and Blake Lively have also donated $1 million to two food banks.

Campari America

On March 30, the company announced a $1 million donation to Another Round, Another Rally. Campari America is encouraging bar patrons who can afford to donate to accept the #AnotherRoundChallenge.

Fireball Cinnamon Whisky / Sazerac

The brand has raised more than 10 percent of their $1 million "World's Biggest Tip Jar" GoFundMe campaign at time of publication. The campaign will provide assistance to bartenders and other service industry workers, donating the funds to the USBG and other tax-exempt, direct-assistance organizations.

Guinness

The iconic brewer announced a €1.5 million fund ($1,619,085) fund to provide financial relief to bar staff who find themselves out of work (€1.2 million of the fund), and the elderly (€300,000).

Samuel Adams

Sam Adams has partnered with the Greg Hill Foundation to create the Restaurant Strong Fund to send as many full-time restaurant workers as possible in Massachusetts $1,000 grants. The brewer seeded the fund with a $100,000 donation and will match donations up to $100,000 through March 31. People can donate to the fund here. Those who need assistance can apply here.

Skrewball Peanut Butter Whiskey

Producers of an unlikely flavor duo, Skrewball has donated $100,000 to the USBG National Charity Foundation.

Singani 63

Steven Soderbergh’s spirit brand has donated $25,000 to the USBG National Charity Foundation.

Michter's Distillery and Philip Duff

For those who don't know, Philip Duff helped create Bols Genever. One dollar from every bottle sold of his own brand, Old Duff Genever, already goes to support the USBG National Charity Foundation and The Benevolent, a UK organization similar to the USBG. Duff and Michter's Distillery are making a joint $10,000 donation USBG NCF.

New Amsterdam Vodka, E. & J. Gallo Winery, and Barstool Sports

Leveraging the massive reach of Barstool Sports and the Spittin' Chiclets podcast, as well as the former's well-established e-commerce platform, New Amsterdam Vodka (on behalf of E. & J. Gallo Winery) has designed a Pink Whitney T-shirt reading "Support Your Local Bartender." The net proceeds will go to the USBG National Charity Foundation and New Amsterdam will donate $5 for every shirt purchased.

Pernod Ricard USA

All Pernod Ricard production facilities based in the United States will produce hand sanitizer. This includes Rabbit Hole Distillery in Louisville, KY, and TX Whiskey Distillery in Fort Worth, TX. The hand sanitizer will be donated.

Victoria Distillers

The Canadian distiller has teamed up with Nezza Naturals to use the byproduct generated through the production of Empress 1908 Gin to make hand sanitizer, which will be provided to essential services workers free of charge.

LVMH

On March 15, a day that saw an escalation in the response to COVID-19 in the United States, the parent company of Moët Hennessy announced that three of its perfume manufacturing facilities were being converted for the production of hand sanitizer intended to be given out free of charge.

Westland Distillery

The Seattle, WA, distillery announced on March 24 that the production of whiskey has been suspended "indefinitely." Instead, for as long it's necessary, Westland will be producing hand sanitizer.

Bacardí

The Bacardí Corporation announced on March 19 that they had transformed their Cataño, Puerto Rico, distillery to produce 1.7 million 10-ounce units of hand sanitizer through a partnership with Puerto Rico-based Olein Refinery, which will be donated to local communities. Production began on March 17 and will continue "as needed." 

Bars & Restaurants

Across the country, bars and restaurants have found ways to support hospitality workers and the communities they serve. One example is Shiraz, a Halal-Indian, Persian and Pakistani restaurant in Las Vegas. Shiraz is partnering with a non-profit medical transfusion organization to set up a blood drive on March 20 and 21.

District One, which specializes in Vietnamese and Asian fusion dishes and craft cocktails, is supporting First Responders, seniors and disabled persons. The restaurant and bar is offering First Responders 50 percent off curbside pickup orders, and seniors and disabled people will receive 50 percent off delivery orders, with those located within a five-mile radius not incurring delivery fees.

Please read this: COVID-19 Planning: 90 Ways to Survive the Next 90 Days for Bars and Restaurants

José Andrés and ThinkFoodGroup have transformed several restaurants in their portfolio into community kitchens. From noon to 5:00 p.m., Jaleo locations, American Eats Tavern, Oyamel and Zaytinya are serving the public soups, salads, entrees and other rotating menu items.

Local Distilleries & Breweries

Several local beverage alcohol producers have been creating hand sanitizers and even sanitizing solutions. The sanitation products are being handed out to consumers and hospitality workers while supplies last. In some cases, these producers are only asking for a small donation to offset production costs. Just a handful of the distilleries and breweries that have stepped up to create hand sanitizer and sanitizing solutions are:

  • BrewDog Brewery (Columbus, OH)
  • Durham Distillery (Durham, NC)
  • Old Forth Distillery (Atlanta, GA)
  • Moonrise Distillery (Clayton, GA)
  • Green Mountain Distillers (Morristown, VT)
  • Claremont Distilled Spirits (Fairfield, NJ)
  • Partnership between Valentine Distilling Co. (Ferndale, MI) and Griffin Claw Brewing Co. (Birmingham, MI)

In times of uncertainty, where everyday life is disrupted for an indeterminate length of time, it can be easy for anyone to slip into a spiral of hopelessness. When we feel down it’s helpful to remember that people are coming together to help however they’re able.

Updated March 30, 2020.

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