James Boag is donating $30,000 worth of kegs to regional venues across Tasmania as part of the Tasmanian Hospitality Association ‘Welcome Back Tour’.
The tour will visit more than 40 regional venues that continue to navigate the challenges presented by COVID-19.
The initiative is part of a commitment by Lion, James Boag’s parent company, to supporting venues impacted by the global pandemic and widespread restrictions.
James Boag Sales Manager John Burchill said the Lion and James Boag team hoped the donation would see more people back in local venues enjoying beers brewed at the James Boag Brewery in Launceston.
“We are really pleased to be able to donate $30,000 worth of kegs to regional venues across the state as they start to welcome more locals and interstate tourists back going into the summer months,” he said. “They need all the support they can get after what has been a really challenging year for the industry.”
James Boag also bought excess kegs back from pubs during lockdown, which it unfortunately had to pour down its trade waste systems.
Head brewer Nathan Calman said that while it was disappointing, taking the kegs back was “the right thing to do”.
“When pubs reopen people expect to have fresh beer when they venture back out,” he said.
Boag also provided 1.25-litre growler bottles to Tassie pubs that wanted to offer a tap beer option with takeaway food.
THA chief executive Steve Old told a parliamentary committee earlier this month that hospitality businesses had been largely kept afloat in Tasmania by government initiatives like JobKeeper, other modes of financial support, and deferrals of invoices.
He said it wouldn’t be until the summer season next year before many venues started to return to a decent amount of earnings.