How to Support Local Breweries While Being Cautious About Coronavirus
Mar 07, 2020
"If the new coronavirus causes workers to take sick days; customers to stay home; and officials to order quarantines, it will be hard on all American companies. For small businesses, though, it could be catastrophic."
- Sick Workers and Spooked Customers: Coronavirus Threatens Small Businesses, The New York Times
The folks at The New York Times aren't the only ones worrying about the devastating impact that the coronavirus could have on local economies.
Companies of all sizes, all over the world are anxiously brainstorming ways to pandemic-proof their business models.
In particular, small businesses designed to function as community gathering places are in danger as the outbreak of COVID-19 continues to spread internationally.
Your local brewery is probably already suffering some backlash from coronavirus panic. And unfortunately, without an end in sight for the spread of the virus, that impact can only be expected to grow... Potentially to the point where breweries aren't able to bring in enough revenue to keep their doors open.
And even if we look into our crystal balls of optimism — wherein we live in a future with a COVID-19 vaccine and all is well with the world — we could still end up mourning the loss of beloved local watering holes that had to suffer the ultimate cost of shuttering because they couldn't bring in the revenue they needed throughout the coronavirus panic of 2020.
Don't want to lose your local brewery to the coronavirus? Here's how you can support them without putting yourself at risk.
If you're still comfortable being out in public for short periods of time, but you don't want to stick around to hang out in community gathering spaces:
Pop into your local brewery for a growler (or crowler) to take home. You should only have to be in the taproom for about five minutes to grab some beer to go.
Grab bottles or cans from your local bottle shop or grocery store. Again, should be a pretty quick in-and-out trip to get some brews to enjoy in the comfort and safety of your own home.
If you're lucky enough to own a Kegerator, a) we're jealous and b) order a keg to go. This way, you can enjoy fresh-from-the-tap craft beer without putting yourself or your health at risk.
Buy some comfy brewery merchandise to snuggle up in while enjoying your beer at home. Beer sales aren't the only contributing factor when it comes to breweries' revenue. Don't forget that merchandise sales help boost their profits, too.
If you're no longer comfortable leaving your own home:
Order craft beer online and have it delivered to your home. Depending where you live, this could be out of the question, as alcohol laws vary pretty wildly state to state. But if you live in a state where beer delivery is a possibility, check out websites like Tavour, Instacart, goPuff, Saucey, Craftshack, and more to order brews straight to your doorstep. Typically, breweries pay to be included in these delivery services' selections, so you're helping them gain a return on their investment by ordering their product online.
Sign up for the Brewers Association's "Support Your Local Brewery" network. All you have to do is fill out this quick form so that the Brewers Association will contact you when there are issues that could potentially threaten small, independent, and traditional breweries. You'll receive an Action Alert when your help is needed, with clear steps on exactly how to assist — and don’t worry, other than the occasional national issue, you will only receive Action Alerts when initiatives arise in your state.
A few better-safe-than-sorry ways you can start protecting yourself against coronavirus right now:
Before we even get to how you can support breweries, if you're out in public anywhere at all, be sure that you:
- Frequently wash your hands for at least 20 seconds (sing one of these pop hits to yourself, if you're sick of singing "Happy Birthday" in your head to make sure you're meeting the suggested time requirement), particularly...
- After coughing or sneezing
- Before, during, and after preparing food
- Before and after eating
- After going to the bathroom
- After handling animals and/or animal waste
- If hands are visibly dirty
- Use hand sanitizer between hand washes
- But do not use it as a replacement for properly washing your hands, as it's not as effective
- Avoid shaking hands or hugging when greeting others
- Opt for a wave, cool guy head nod, a verbal greeting, or anything else that doesn't require physical contact
- Cough or sneeze into the crook of your elbow, rather than into your hands
- This is also hilariously known as a vampire sneeze
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth as much as possible
- If you are sick or feel you could be starting to get sick, STAY HOME!
Stay up to date on COVID-19:
About Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19), Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC)
Q&A on Coronaviruses (COVID-19), World Health Organization
Coronavirus Live Updates, The New York Times