Friday, June 26, 2020

Quote du Jour: "We need confidence in the truth and we absolutely need beer, if we are to rise to meet the challenges of this crisis,"

From Euractiv:

Real Facts, and Beer
This article is part of our special report Hospitality sector: Re-connecting EU citizens after the pandemic.
Abraham Lincoln is often (mis-)quoted as saying “I am a firm believer in the people. If given the truth, they can be depended upon to meet any national crisis. The great point is to bring them the real facts, and beer.”
Pavlos Photiades is the president of The Brewers of Europe.

The origins of “…and beer” are certainly much disputed. However, the sentiment the phrase carries may still find meaning in the modern world, in the midst of the current pandemic and all the turmoil it has provoked. We need confidence in the truth and we absolutely need beer, if we are to rise to meet the challenges of this crisis.

In terms of the “real facts” (about beer): before the lockdown closed almost every bar, café and restaurant in Europe, one third of all beers were served and enjoyed in hospitality, creating 1.7 million bar and restaurant jobs and adding €24 billion in value to the EU economy.

All that activity was rightly put on hold to mitigate the worst of the coronavirus spread, keeping customers and staff out of the social venues where they may have been at risk of catching the coronavirus. It meant of course that the people were not able to socialise and connect in person. This isolation was keenly felt throughout society as we all adapted, confined to our homes and unable to seek the company of most of our friends and family.

Now hospitality establishments are beginning to reopen across the continent, ready to welcome back consumers who wish to reconnect with each other over a drink. Yet people need to have the confidence that those places will not only be as dependable and convivial as they were before the shutdown, but that they will also be returning to safe and responsible environments.

Without that confidence, combined with the social distancing restrictions that remain in place in most countries, the people may not be back to their beer as quickly as they might have hoped. Despite being open, businesses are going to continue to struggle to overcome the inevitable decline in customer numbers and sales, compared to the buoyant sector we experienced last year. It means that the suppliers and employers in the rest of the beer and hospitality value chain will also suffer as a result....

There's a man who believes in the product.
And note to self, there is no "V" in hospitality.