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The international relief effort underway in the Indian Ocean is one of the biggest in world history. Many of our industry’s top players are doing their part to help those devastated by the tsunami. Here’s a look at how a few quick-serves are helping out:
A minimum of $100,000 will be donated by Caribou Coffee to the Coffee Kids “Sumatra Relief Fund” on the one-month anniversary of the tsunami disaster. The donation will directly benefit child victims of the coffee-growing region of Aceh in Sumatra. All funds contributed will be used to buy food, clothing, and rebuild community structures. “We are all horrified at the extent of the disaster caused by the recent earthquake and tsunami,” says Coffee Kids founder, Bill Fishbein. “The response from Caribou and other companies to this tragedy has renewed my faith in the human spirit.” On Wednesday, all 300 Caribou café’s will donate to the relief fund $1 of every cup of Sumatra coffee and every bag of Sumatra beans sold.
Earlier this month, Figaro’s Pizza stores donated 25 percent of their proceeds to Mercy Corps to aid in the disaster relief. “By coordinating our efforts and getting our franchisees’ local communities involved, we’re hoping our [collective] donation will have a major impact on the relief efforts,” says Jerry Doty, national director of marketing for Figaro’s Pizza. Doty donated an initial $1000 on behalf of Figaro’s to get the ball rolling.
From January 1–February 28, The Coffee Beanery corporate offices will donate 50 cents to the American Red Cross for each 12- or 16-ounce bag of Sumatra Mandeling or Mocha Java coffee purchased. In addition, collection canisters will be sent to all 176 stores nationwide. Some franchisees will match the donations that corporate makes for the bags of coffee sold in their locations. “We wanted to do our part to help with the relief efforts. These people have affected our daily life by growing a quality product that we have been selling for many years. Now it’s our turn to help them restore a resemblance to normal daily life,” says Walter Pilon, VP of marketing, The Coffee Beanery.
Outside the quick-service restaurant arena, food and beverage companies are also lending a hand. For example, China Mist Tea Company will donate 50 percent of one month’s gross sales of its teas sold on its web sites to relief efforts through UNFPA (the United Nations Population Fund) emergency assistance. “We are saddened by this unprecedented tragedy, but we are pleased to give a helping hand to [the nearly 150,000] pregnant and nursing women in Sri Lanka, Indonesia, and Maldives,” says Dan Schweiker, China Mist’s chairman and CEO.