Jamaica News: Minister of Local Government and Community Development, Hon. Desmond McKenzie, has commended the coalition of beverage companies that has pledged to help local bars and taverns reopen for business.
The $28-million initiative is being undertaken by Red Stripe, Pepsi Cola Jamaica, Celebration Brands and the Desnoes & Geddes Foundation.
During the virtual press launch of the ‘For Our Bars: For Jamaica’ programme on May 19, the Minister said that on behalf of the Prime Minister, Government and people of Jamaica, he wished to express sincere thanks and appreciation to the management of Red Stripe and the companies that have joined to reach out to community bars and taverns.
The beverage companies have committed to provide start-up cases for 1,860 bars and are providing cases of free products for restocking, 4,000 face shields and 2,000 gallons of hand sanitisers.
Training will also be provided for bartenders and bar operators in the areas of Health and Sanitation Protocols; Responsible Serving; Speed & Efficiency; Foundations of Profitability; the Art of Great Serving and Great Drinks; Food Pairing; and Pouring & Serving Beer. These will be carried out through the Red Stripe Bar Academy, the Heineken Certified Bar Adviser Programme and the D&G Foundation.
“This demonstration of goodwill is predicated on a sense of understanding the needs of the community that you are responding to,” Mr. McKenzie said.
Citing a recent survey conducted by the Social Development Commission (SDC) on behalf of the Ministry, Mr. McKenzie said there are 11,030 community bars and taverns islandwide.
These, he said, would have been affected by the Government’s announcement of the closure of bars and taverns in March.
Starting today (May 19), these bars and taverns are able to open for business from 11 a.m. to one hour before the start of the nightly curfew.
Announcement of the ‘For Our Bars: For Jamaica’ programme was made by Red Stripe’s Managing Director, Luis Prata, who not only spoke of Red Stripe’s commitment to the initiative, but also the importance of compliance to Government Orders.
“We know the importance of community bars as social and economic catalysts. These trade outlets are highly valued partners of Red Stripe and we will, indeed, dedicate significant time and effort to facilitate a smooth and successful transition to this new normal. The bars, which stand to benefit from this initiative, have to meet certain criteria for selection and comply with Government health and safety protocols,” Mr. Prata said.
The protocols and guidelines for operation were previously announced by the Minister on May 11.
Source: JIS News