As updated COVID-19 business restrictions hit the California economy, food insecurity – already affecting over 20% of American households – threatens to climb higher through the holiday season.
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. is partnering with local nonprofit Del Mar Village Association to fight food insecurity and help the local community impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The organization is one of many beneficiaries to receive funds from the $1 Million pledged to be donated this year by Sierra Nevada.
In August, Sierra Nevada unveiled its new program centered around the release of Dankful IPA, a generously hoppy beer launched to help the brewery raise awareness for a variety of nonprofits working to support local communities. A hoppy West Coast-style IPA, Dankful is now available at retail stores across the country. The beer is 7.4% ABV with 55 IBU’s and resinous flavor notes of pine and tropical fruit.
“Our goal is to support communities in our backyard and beyond, with a focus on urgent needs for many people right now,” explained Sierra Nevada Vice President Sierra Grossman. “Dankful allows us to focus on what we do best: supporting the causes we believe in and brewing great beer.”
The funds donated by Sierra Nevada will support the Fuel the Frontlines Program, which collects donations to purchase meals from local struggling businesses to be delivered to frontline workers in hospitals across San Diego.
“Healthcare providers risk their personal health every day, placing our health and safety above their own wellbeing,” said Jen Grove, CEO of the Del Mar Village Association. “Fuel the Frontline gave us a very tangible way to help our community in the early days of the pandemic – not only those vital medical personnel but our local restaurants as well. We are so excited to be able to continue this important work alongside Sierra Nevada Brewing Company and expect to be able to provide 1,500 to 2,000 meals for our frontline workers through our dedicated small business community.”
Scripps Memorial Hospital Encinitas is one of the hospitals supported by the initiative. “I have been a nurse for many years, and I know that food is one of the most appreciated gifts”, said Jan Zachry, Scripps’ VP Chief Operations Executive. “The health of our staff is a top priority and the meals donated by Fuel the Frontlines have contributed to their wellbeing. When the community goes above and beyond in recognizing our health care teams like this, the infusion of positive energy and increased camaraderie among staff is palpable.”
The food provided by the program to frontline workers comes from local restaurants, ensuring that the initiative is also supporting businesses that are essential to the community.
“We opened our business successfully in mid-January, but obviously we had to quickly pivot with the pandemic shutdowns two months later,” said Christophe Cevasco, owner and chef of Beeside Balcony, one of Del Mar participating restaurants. “During those early days of the pandemic, DMVA’s Fuel the Frontline program literally helped keep our small business afloat. Unfortunately, 8 months later, business is still tough and our local hospitals and medical workers are in need more than ever of support.”
Sierra Nevada is partnering with new nonprofits each quarter, allowing the brewery to be nimble and immediate in its efforts. “Rather than making donations contingent upon Dankful sales, we’ve committed to at least $1 Million in donations over the next year,” explained Communications Director Robin Gregory. “This is a way to provide immediate support for nonprofits doing critical work in our communities.”