SHINER, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) – Shiner Beer is donating $500,000 to the Texas Restaurant Association’s relief fund to provide financial help to Texas’ independent restaurateurs wanting to safeguard employee jobs amid the coronavirus pandemic.

“This is an unprecedented time for our industry, fighting a never-before-seen battle for survival,” said Dr. Emily Williams Knight, President & CEO of the Texas Restaurant Association and Education Foundation. “In times of crisis, restaurants are always on the front lines, feeding victims and first responders; in this crisis, restaurants are among the victims.”

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The donation from the 111-year-old independent craft brewery comes as most restaurants and bars across Texas are closed or limited to take-out service.

The industry lost an estimated $25 billion in sales in the first three weeks of March. Three million jobs were lost during the same period.

It’s a devastating blow to an industry where many survive week-to-week and paycheck to paycheck.

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Through an application process, the fund issues grants of up to $5,000 per restaurant unit to keep restaurants in operation and their employees working.

“All of us have been affected by COVID-19. As of today, our brewery is fortunate to continue brewing with enhanced health and safety measures. But we are saddened to know that restaurants and bars throughout Texas—that are independent like us—are in distress,” said Jimmy Mauric, Shiner’s Brewmaster. “We hope that our collective fundraising efforts will help them respond to the challenges that they’re facing.”

In addition to its donation, Shiner is encouraging its followers on social media to donate to the TX Restaurant Relief Fund initiative by texting “ShineOnTX” to 31669, and post a toast to those affected in the restaurant, foodservice or hospitality industry using the hashtag #ShineOnTX, contributing to the Fund reaching its $10 million goal.

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