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Drinks Trust data suggests severity of lockdown’s impact on trade

Published:  15 June, 2020

The Drinks Trust has awarded almost a third more in emergency grants during the first five months of 2020 compared with the whole of 2019, highlighting the impact of lockdown on the UK drinks trade.

Financial and wellness grants to the value of £800,000 have so far been awarded this year, against £627,339 during the proceeding 12 months.

Just over half of the total relief funds granted have gone to 1750 beneficiaries, with each awarded £250 through the trade charity’s Covid-19 Emergency Grant scheme.

Of those beneficiaries, some 31% of recipients had been made redundant, 56% furloughed, with 70% of those applicants being the sole household earner, and with the average age of recipients being 29. 

Messages of thanks shared by The Drinks Trust bring home the hardship faced by many as the pandemic continues to impact dramatically on drinks trade jobs, incomes and the wider economy.

“I would just like to say a massive thank you to everyone involved in this grant. It’s going to help me out massively with bills and being able to eat for the next few months. Relieves some anxiety for sure. I really do appreciate it!” said one.

Another recipient wrote: “As a result of my redundancy we’ve had to give up our home and move in with family; a situation that we’re all struggling to deal with. This grant gives us the ability to put some food on the table and get some of the bits we’ll need for my son to start school in September. Again, my heartfelt thanks to everyone involved.”

In a statement released today (15 June) The Drinks Trust thanked all businesses “who made generous donations to both the COVID-19 fund”, including big donors such as Penrod Ricard, William Grant & Sons and Whisky.Auction.

Over 100 drinks industry businesses have so far donated to the charity, alongside more individual initiatives, such as that of Graft Wine Company’s Nik Darlington, who plans to run 100km from vineyard to vineyard during English Wine Week (20 to 28 June) to help raise funds while also raising awareness of the domestic wine industry.

“We are so grateful to everyone who has supported us at this very difficult time. The response from the drinks industry in terms of donations and fundraising initiatives has been incredible, without which we would not have been able to help so many people,” said Michael Saunders, chair of The Drinks Trust.

“However we still have so much more to do. The Drinks Trust is funded by industry donor businesses, so none of the support we have been able to deliver would have been possible without the generosity and support from all areas of the drinks industry.”