TORONTO – This week, Restaurants Canada and Uber Eats distributed $1 Million in grants to 400 independently-owned restaurants across Canada. This program is part of a partnership announced in February to support restaurants that have had to keep their dine-in service closed or restricted with capacity limits. It is part of the “Eat Local Relief Effort”, a Canadian Uber Eats initiative to provide support to restaurants when they need it most.
“As we continue past the one-year mark of the COVID-19 pandemic in Canada, it’s never been more important to support the restaurant industry and help keep kitchens open,” said Lola Kassim, General Manager of Uber Eats Canada. “We’re proud to partner with Restaurants Canada on this program and offer support to 400 restaurants across the country. This is one piece of our ongoing efforts to do our part and support the thousands of restaurants in Canada that make up the heart and soul of local neighbourhoods.”
After receiving over 1500 applications from coast to coast in the first week alone, 400 restaurants were selected based on financial need, having fewer than 5 locations, a maximum of 50 employees per location and annual gross revenues in 2020 of less than $3 million per location. Preference was given to the restaurants who demonstrated a commitment to their local community.
“The response to the grant has been staggering, but it just goes to show the need for continued support for restaurants across the country,” said Todd Barclay, President and CEO, Restaurants Canada. “The transition to dine-in continues to be longer than anyone expected, and thanks to industry allies like Uber Eats, this grant will go a long way to allow these restaurants to continue safely serving their local communities.”
Feedback from restaurants has been overwhelming, with many expressing that delivery options have been a lifeline during the pandemic. Others noted that this support not only helped operations, but morale as well.
“We were thrilled to have been awarded the grant which was great financially, but the real benefit was how it lifted the spirits of all the staff and gave them the sense that we are all in this together and truly not alone.” – Lorenzo Lepore, GM, Vancouver Alpen Club, Vancouver, BC
“We’re glad to be selected as one of the recipients of the Eat Local Relief Grants. As one of the Top Eats in Uber Eats in the last few months, UberEats has been a role model to showcase its support and commitment to the local community, especially for the restaurants impacted by the pandemic.” – Chef Jimmy, Aroma Bistro 741, Winnipeg, MB
“Thank you Restaurants Canada and Uber Eats for their generous support and commitment to local restaurants. UberEats has been our preferred delivery partner ever since coming to Ottawa in 2016. They provided us with an immediate and consistent sales outlet during those first few weeks of lockdown. We are very thankful for our loyal UberEats customers and the opportunity to serve them as we navigate this difficult time together.” Johny Bonney, GM, The King Eddy, Ottawa, ON
“Our experience with the Restaurants Canada and Uber Eats program to give back to their partners was very appreciated. In this time of need, this was something unexpected and generous on the part of Uber Eats.” – George Michakis, Owner, La Belle Province (Bellepros), Montreal, QC
“Programs offering extra support to businesses such as mine during this very uncertain time have been the boost that has given me the stability to carry through. In addition to the financial cushion that a grant offers, having this type of outreach also lifts spirits in a way that lasts well after the money is spent.” – Erin Schwanz, Owner, Fortune Doughnut, Halifax, NS
Uber Eats announced the grant program as part of their five-month, $7-million restaurant support package to help independently owned restaurants. The package is driving renewed demand to local restaurants, helping those who are struggling through the second and now third wave of COVID-19 by continuing to waive and discount a number of fees, including: extending 0% pickup and 7.5% online ordering until June 30, 2021, and helping restaurants with cash flow by waiving daily payout fees until June 30, 2021.
Restaurants Canada is a national, not-for-profit association advancing the potential of Canada’s diverse and dynamic foodservice industry through member programs, research, advocacy, resources and events. Before the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, Canada’s foodservice sector was a $95 billion industry, directly employing 1.2 million people, providing Canada’s number one source of first jobs and serving 22 million customers across the country every day. The industry has since lost hundreds of thousands of jobs and billions in sales due to the impacts of COVID-19.
Uber Eats is an on-demand food delivery app and website that helps bring millions of people around the world the food they want, at the tap of a button. They partner with over 400,000 restaurants in more than 6,000 cities across 45 countries and six continents who make meals for every taste and occasion. From specialty local favorites to everyday national brand names, Uber Eats offers millions of dishes while maintaining an average delivery time under 30 minutes.
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