As of today, thousands of people have died in the US due to the Coronavirus. This pandemic has affected all types of restaurants and businesses; mom & pops, chains (Waffle House closed 365 locations as of today), and even Michelin starred establishments. Most who survive are struggling. But there are F&B businesses who have taken on Coronavirus as a challenge; as a way to help the world. Here is a list of a few of these businesses that deserve recognition for their efforts.
PS – if we missed someone, or if you are a Food & Beverage company or brand who is helping, leave us a note in the comments. We’d love to learn more.
***Featured Image credit Yoga Purnama Putra
Companies Giving Back During the Coronavirus Pandemic
Frida’s Bakery Cafe Prepping Meals for the Food Insecure
Frida’s Bakery & Café in the Hudson Valley’s Milton, NY is preparing 50 to 100 meals up to three times a week for people who are newly food insecure due to COVID-19 related closures and layoffs. The meal preparation is for an Ulster Co. initiative called Project Resilience set-up as emergency food response to the results of the pandemic for county residents. Owner Bob Pollock reports a recent meal was “more than a quarter grilled chicken with roasted potatoes and asparagus” along with some of Frida’s highly acclaimed bread. He reports he had to get all new plastic packaging, as opposed to Frida’s normal eco-friendly cardboard because the plastic works better for reheating in microwaves and for keeping the meal in a refrigerator. Pollock also owns the nearby Buttermilk Falls Inn + Spa, which had to close in the face of the pandemic and furlough almost all of its employees. There, General Manager CJ Hartwell-Kelly is working with the Hudson Valley Food Bank to secure bulk food, which she picks up and then divides it into nutritionally well-balanced parcels for furloughed employees, complete with a carton of eggs from the flock of heritage chickens that reside at the property’s on-site organic Millstone Farm. She is doing this on a weekly basis.
Free Coffee to Front-Line Responders from Starbucks
Famed international coffee shop, Starbucks is offering free delivery on your orders, but they are also offering free coffee to responders on the front line of the coronavirus outbreak all the way to Sunday, May 3. If you are asking if that is all they’re doing, don’t worry, they are doing much more. The Starbucks Foundation is donating $500,000 to support front-line responders.
Toups Meatery is Giving Away Meals to Those in Need
The Toups family has been in Louisiana for more than 300 years. Obviously, they have a deep connection to the community. During these hard times, they have been offering Family Meals. Every day, at 3 pm, family meals are given free of charge. These meals are meant for those in need but are specially targeted to those in the service industry who have been hit so hard by closures. All they ask is that people call ahead so the meals can be safely processed. For those of you who want to assist and help the NOLA community, you can send donations via Venmo (@toupsmeatery), PayPal at [email protected] and over the phone at 504-252-4999.
RIND Donates Fruit Snacks to Food Banks
RIND, the skin-on superfruit, is a snack mix company that features fruit with the skin, is donating to food banks in the Bay Area to help provide nutritious fruit snacks to families in need or facing shelter-in-place restrictions. They will soon be extending this initiative on the East Coast as well.
Great Performances Prepares & Delivers Meals to the Elderly
Great Performances (New York) has always been known for being altruistic. It was founded in 1979 by Liz Newmark to help female artists make ends meet. Today it is one of the top Catering Companies in New York with many prestigious clients, including the Brooklyn Museum, Wave Hill, and The legendary Plaza Hotel. The Great Performances team has taken on the task of preparing and delivering meals to members of New York’s senior community who cannot go out to pick up food, or whose senior centers have run out. This is a lovely way to help the most at-risk population.
David Burke’s Orange Lawn Feeds the Front Lines at St. Barnabas Medical Center
David Burke has always been known for giving in times of need. During the Coronavirus Pandemic, David Burke Orange Lawn is preparing meals for employees at Saint Barnabas Medical Center. The restaurant sends hospital staff all individually boxed lunches and dinners to the hospital daily. That is a lovely way to give back to the local community and show appreciation.
Chef David Burke Launches #FeedtheHeroes
FeedtheHeroes, an operation to provide meals to first responders
David Burke has launched a new initiative to provide meals to first responders and medical personnel on the frontlines of the pandemic battle in the New Jersey and New York City areas. When people click to donate, the team at David Burke works with local hospitals, healthcare workers, first responders and more to provide them with the food they need to help them in this fight.
To help support Burke’s #FeedtheHeroes operation, go to PayPal.Me/FeedtheHeroes.
Honeybrains Donates Meals to Healthcare Workers During the Coronavirus Pandemic
Honeybrains, NYC’s only restaurant concept dedicated to better brain health as the key to a thriving body has set up a mechanism whereby people can donate to help feed healthcare workers Honeybrain’s delicious and nutritious food, the latter being particularly important given the stress medical workers are under. It’s a win-win initiative – the healthcare workers get free meals and the donations paying or them is helping to keep Honeybrains’ staff employed. Currently, Honeybrains is working with Mt. Sinai and Lenox Hill hospitals and is in the process of expanding beyond those two. If you want to help, click here.
Super Coffee Donates Coffee to Essential Workers in Hospitals and Grocery Stores
If you love Super Coffee, be ready to fall in love with them a little more. Super Coffee has donated more than 50,000 units of coffee to essential workers in hospitals and grocery stores nationwide. They have also joined the Brands x Better coalition of brands who have pledged to donate 10% of their proceeds to charities during the COVID-19 pandemic AND are hosting daily Super Coffee breaks on Instagram live with top influencers like Pat Schwarzenegger, Baron Davis, and more offering tips for people to stay positive.
#ATLFAMILYMEAL Prepare and Deliver Free “Family Meals” to Hospitality Workers
This incentive spearheaded by Michael Lennox, CEO & Founder of Electric Hospitality (Ladybird, Golden Eagle, Muchacho), #ATLFAMILYMEAL is a community of Atlanta area chefs, restaurant owners, hospitality workers and business/non-profit leaders rallying together to help the Atlanta hospitality community and its people survive and thrive by procuring funding, sponsorships and in-kind donations to purchase, prepare and deliver free “family meals” to the doorsteps of hospitality workers across the metro Atlanta area.
Chefs and hospitality groups who are actively participating in this effort include:
- Gina and Linton Hopkins
- Golden Eagle
- King of Pops
- Fox Bros.
- And others.
Sparrow & Wolf Social Media Bartender Challenge
Sparrow & Wolf, an American restaurant in Las Vegas has launched the #sparrowandwolfchallenge. What is it? They are asking bartenders to make a cocktail at home with the ingredients they have on hand, upload to Instagram with the hashtag #sparrowandwolfchallenge and tag other bartenders they know. For every video with the hashtag, Sparrow + Wolf will donate one meal to a first responder and they’re hoping other restaurants/bars will join in and match the challenge to donate a meal as well.
GO BIG Donates Energy Shots to Hospitals
Most would probably think…what luck! GO BIG recently launched only to be confronted by the Covid-19 pandemic. Instead of being bogged down by the negatives, GO BIG is donating 10,000 energy shots to hospitals. Those who are working long shifts under duress and on little sleep are sure to appreciate the thought. GO BIG founder, Ben Koren said “We’ve seen what has been happening in Italy… it’s heartbreaking. We want to help where we can, and there’s no doubt that first responders to the pandemic are going to need energy and focus for long, difficult shifts”.
Those hospitals that are interested in getting a donation of GO BIG, can enter their information here.
Wayne’s Smoke Shack Donates Meals to Hospital Workers
Wayne’s Smoke Shack (Colorado) has not had it easy. The restaurant has had to lay off workers, but the remaining staff is working to help where they can. The restaurant is donating meals to workers in area hospitals. In order to continue this, they have started a GoFundMe campaign, so if you have a little extra on hand, it is for a noble cause. These are the hospitals that Wayne’s is donating to:
Avista Adventist Hospital
Centennial Peaks Hospital
Denver Health Medical Center
Kindred Hospital – Denver
Longmont United Hospital
Longs Peak Hospital
National Jewish Health
Presbyterian/St. Luke’s Medical Center
UCHealth Broomfield Hospital
Freshly & Nestle Partner to donate $500,000 to Meals on Wheels America
Meal delivery service Freshly partnered with Nestle to donate $500,000 to Meals on Wheels America to support their vital work to help vulnerable seniors ( one of the most at-risk communities) amidst COVID-19. Their goal is to help local communities across the U.S. to meet the increased demand for nutritious meals that can keep seniors safe and healthy.
Both companies encourage consumers and employees with the means to donate what they can to the fund, and share with their networks, to amplify the impact and have raised an additional $30,000 to date.
Celcius Drops Off Endurance Drinks at Hospitals and Firehouses in South Florida.
Celsius, a line of performance products that include 7 essential vitamins; zero sugar, no added artificial flavors, colors or preservatives, no aspartame and are clinically proven to accelerate metabolism, burn fat, burn calories, boost endurance and help build lean body muscle, is doing product drops at firehouses and hospitals for those on the front lines in South Florida, as well as offering first responders/healthcare workers a case of their product when they DM them a picture of their ID. You can guarantee they can use a pick me up right about now.
American Licorice Company Donates $10 for Every Website Sale to the United Way of La Porte
American Licorice Company, maker of Red Vines and Sour Punch, understands that this is a very challenging time for everyone across our country right now. We all feel compelled to help in some way, even though we’re asked to stay home.
American Licorice Company is taking initiative from their philanthropic and community-centered Red Vines’ Peace, Love and Vines and Sour Punch’s Embrace Your Punch programs to help do some good. American Licorice will be donating $10 for every sale generated on their website to United Way of La Porte, Indiana (the birthplace of American Licorice Company). The company’s goal is to donate $10,000 over the next three weeks to help aid much-needed community resources and efforts during these difficult times. If you’re jonesing for something sweet, this is a great way to satisfy your sweet tooth safely from home and help families in need.
Playa Bowls Supports Local First Responders
Playa Bowls, a New Jersey-based superfruit bowl shop has launched the #HelpOurHeroes campaign, asking customers who are ordering for take-out and delivery to make small donations through their OrderSpoon platform while ordering bowls which connect to a GoFundMe Page created by their local Playa Bowl franchise. Playa Bowls then delivers meals to those on the front line, including first responders, hospital workers, and nursing home staff.
The Playa Bowls Lacey and Playa Bowls Manahawkin teams (New Jersey) have raised funds via GoFundMe and have made over 500 bowl donations to: Southern Ocean Hospital, Urgent Care Stafford, Lacey PD, Lacey Urgent Care, Toms River PD, Community Medical Center, Toms River Urgent Care, Lakewood Hospital, Green Acres Nursing Home, Lavalette PD, and Island Heights PD. To help out, click here.
Kaldi’s Coffee Donates to The Gateway Resilience Fund During Coronavirus Outbreak
St. Louis based Kaldi’s Coffee, is donating proceeds from sales of the one-pound bags of their Gratitude Blend to The Gateway Resilience Fund, a fund that provides short term monetary relief to employees and owners of independent bars, restaurants, and shops in the St. Louis area affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Bags of the Gratitude Blend are available for $20 (includes shipping costs) online here.
Additionally, in an effort to support the medical community during this time, Kaldi’s Coffee is also donating and distributing hundreds of 8 oz. bags of the Gratitude Blend to Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital.
Meater Donates to No Kid Hungry Coronavirus Pandemic
MEATER, the first truly wireless meat thermometer, is giving back to the community, one meal at a time. With customer support, MEATER will be donating 10% of campaign proceeds generated on their website to No Kid Hungry throughout the month of April. Through MEATERgives the goal is to improve the well-being and nutrition of our young neighbors in the face of this global pandemic.
Raw Juce Supports Frontline Healthcare Workers
Raw Juce has partnered up with House of Athlete founded by NFL veteran All-Pro receiver Brandon Marshall to support frontline healthcare heroes in South Florida through the Nourish and Recover the Frontlines South Florida Fund.
Anyone who contributes will receive a 25-cent credit back in Raw Juce app credit on the Raw Juce app for every dollar they donate.
To help, click here.
Frontline Foods New Haven Feeds Healthcare workers at Yale-New Haven Hospital
New Haven restaurateurs Avi Szapiro of Roia, Jason Sobocinski of Olmo, and Duncan Goodall of Koffee Katering who developed Thrive New Haven, have joined forces with Westville resident Dennis Serfilippi who started a New Haven Strong GoFundMe campaign. They combined their efforts to help both healthcare and hospitality workers through the New Haven charter of Frontline Foods, a national volunteer-run campaign in partnership with José Andrés’ World Central Kitchen.
Participating restaurants include Roia, Olmo, Koffee Katering, Crêpes Choupette, Atticus Bookstore Cafe, Union League Cafe, and Miya’s Sushi.
To help, click here.
Samah Dada Donates 100% of T-Shirt Sales to Help Fund the Restaurant Industry
Recipe developer & Today Show digital cooking host Samah Dada launched a COVID-19 Merch Relief campaign, called “Bought this T-shirt and Stayed the F*ck Home.” All proceeds go to help fund the restaurant/hospitality industry. Initial restaurants include but are not limited to Lovely Day, Angel’s Share, Miss Ada, Cafe Habana, Jajaja and Osteria 57 and more! T-Shirts will be $40 and totes will be $20. Want the tee? Click here.