Drinks company Diageo has announced the launch of a new programme to support pubs and bars around the world in their efforts to re-open after the easing of COVID-19 lockdowns.
The ‘Raising the Bar’ initiative will be a two-year programme that will start in July 2020, and will also include a US$20 million community fund.
The initiative was developed following a global survey of bar owners to identify what they needed to reopen after the lockdown periods.
The top priorities highlighted in the survey included hygiene measures, digital support, and practical equipment to transform how their outlets will operate in future.
The programme will provide targeted support to help pay for the physical equipment needed for outlets to re-open.
In the UK, the company will provide initial funding for ‘hygiene kits’ with high-quality permanent sanitiser dispensing units, medical-grade hand sanitisers, and a range of personal protection equipment.
Additionally, it will help pubs and bars to establish partnerships with online reservation and cashless systems.
Commenting on the initiative, Ivan Menezes, chief executive of Diageo, said: “Pubs and bars sit at the heart of every community. We have launched ‘Raising the Bar’, as so many outlets have been impacted by this crisis and badly need help to open their doors again”.