Coronavirus: the positive hospitality industry moves

By James McAllister

- Last updated on GMT

Coronavirus: the positive hospitality industry moves

Related tags: Coronavirus, UnitedWeStand

A round-up of the positive action the world of hospitality is taking in the face of the Coronavirus pandemic.

- Johnnie Walker and Smirnoff producer Diageo has pledged to enable the creation of more than eight million bottles of hand sanitiser, by donating up to two million litres of alcohol to manufacturing partners to help protect frontline healthcare workers in the fight against the Coronavirus. It will provide Grain Neutral Spirit (GNS) – a 96% strength ethyl alcohol used primarily in production of vodka and gin – and make it available at no cost to hand sanitiser producers in multiple countries including the UK, Ireland, Italy and the US to help overcome shortages in healthcare systems. 

- Industry charity Hospitality Action has started taking applications for its Covid-19 grant scheme​ to help workers in the industry who find themselves struggling as a result of the Coronavirus crisis. Laid off hospitality workers can apply​ for a one-off grant, which equates to £250 per household. Applicants must be working within the UK hospitality industry, or have worked in the industry within the last month. They will need a full month’s bank statement and evidence from their employer that their job has been ended or their working hours have been reduced. The charity launched its emergency appeal to support stricken workers last week​, and has so far raised more than £90,000.

- Operators are continuing to show plenty of love and support for NHS workers fighting against the disease on the frontline. itsu, which has now completely shut down its estate in-line with Government orders, says it has donated over £15,000 worth of freshly made sushi and salads to hospital staff across London and beyond. And recipe box service Mindful Chef is offering NHS staff a 30% discount on all boxes ordered throughout the crisis. 

- Meanwhile, Josh Katz and Mattia Bianchi, founders of Berber & Q Grill House and Berber & Q Shawarma Bar, have launched a GoFundMe to raise funds to deliver their food to NHS workers around London. 100% of the funds raised will be spent on supplies and staff to produce the food, and has so far raised more than £23,000. For more information, click here​. 

- Leading hospitality industry titles BigHospitality, Restaurant magazine​ and The Morning Advertiser​ have come together with key suppliers Arla Pro, McCain and Unilever Food Solutions to launch United We Stand​, a campaign dedicated to helping the sector navigate the Coronavirus crisis. This is a hospitality-wide editorial initiative that aims to educate the sector on what support is out there and provide advice alongside daily insights and breaking news. It will see the creation of a sector advisory board that will include key figures from companies from across a wide spectrum of expertise, including Just Eat, Shelley Sandzer, Shield Safety, Elliotts PR, RMS, Gannons and others. Experts from these companies will be on hand for the foreseeable future to answer any questions hospitality employers or employees have on wide ranging aspects, including employment law, managing finances, dealing with landlords, and seeking Government assistance.

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