The Bundaberg Rum $11.5m Raising the Bar initiative has so far provided more than 1300 venues across Australia with COVID-safe supplies, and there is still funding available to help more venues.

The scheme provides supplies including hand sanitiser and dispenser stations, masks, gloves, floor demarcations (stickers) and digital thermometers, which are all helping to give consumers confidence to return to venues.

Angus McPherson, Managing Director at Bundaberg Rum’s parent company Diageo Australia said: “Any licenced venue can apply for this support and we really encourage all hospitality venues to get involved because we want to help pubs, bars and clubs across the country emerge stronger out of this pandemic.

“Our pubs and clubs have been really doing it tough throughout the pandemic. We are determined to support them and ensure their loyal patrons feel confident that they can return to their local and socialise as safely as possible.”

Independent market research conducted for Raising the Bar showed that more Australians are feeling confident about returning to their local pub, particularly when they can see measures in place that help to make the venue COVID-safe.

“It’s encouraging to hear that two thirds of people (67 per cent) now feel more confident visiting their local thanks to COVID-safe measures like the Raising the Bar initiative being implemented across the hospitality industry,” McPherson said.

“When we decided to make this investment, we knew that hospitality venues needed a helping hand to recover from the pandemic, to ease the cost burden of maintaining a Covid-safe environment for their staff and their patrons.”

The survey also highlighted the challenges facing the hospitality industry as it showed that while confidence might be returning only 36 per cent of Australians are visiting the pub as frequently as they were before the pandemic.

Applications remain open for venues, to apply head to the Raising the Bar website.

Andy Young

Andy joined Intermedia as Editor of The Shout in 2015, writing news on a daily basis and also writing features for National Liquor News. Now Managing Editor of both The Shout and Bars and Clubs.

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