Fund provides grants for hospitality industry employees who have lost their jobs because of the COVID-19 pandemic
KALAMAZOO, Mich. — Imperial Beverage, a statewide beer, wine and spirits distributor, today announced it is partnering with 5 Michigan distilleries to donate $10,000 to the Michigan Hospitality Industry Employee Relief Fund. The fund is providing $500 grants to Michiganders who worked in the hospitality industry and have been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has touched every sector of Michigan’s economy, from southeast Michigan to the western U.P, and the restaurant industry has taken the brunt of this impact,” said Joe Cekola, president of Imperial Beverage. “By partnering with these suppliers to donate to the Michigan Hospitality Industry Employee Relief Fund we can help employees struggling to make ends meet and provide for their families during these unprecedented times.”
Distilleries partnering with Imperial Beverage include: Three Chord Bourbon, Ann Arbor Distilling Co., Mammoth Distilling, Grand Traverse Distillery, and Temperance Distilling.
“There has never been a more critical time for us to band together and help those in need,” said Neil Giraldo, Co-Founder and Chairman of the Board of Three Chord Bourbon. “By teaming up with other leaders in our home state of Michigan and supporting this relief fund, we hope to make a significant impact.”
Since launching on April 6, the fund has already paid out $250,000 to 500 hospitality industry workers.
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Imperial Beverage is a long-standing member of the Michigan beverage distribution community. Established in 1933 after the repeal of prohibition and purchased by Kalamazoo’s Cekola family in 1984, Imperial has grown from a one county beer distributor to a top 10 statewide beer, wine & spirits wholesaler. With 390 employees and 4 locations in Kalamazoo, Livonia, Traverse City and Ishpeming, Imperial provides statewide coverage that serves every Michigan County, every week, all year long.