The Hawaii Restaurant Card for businesses is back for the holidays as part of a statewide effort to bolster struggling eateries in the state.

American Savings Bank announced that it has relaunched the business holiday card program, with the goal of distributing 50,000 cards across the state, which would inject about $2.5 million in direct support to local food establishments.

Businesses would be purchasing the cards, and have until Dec. 10 to complete an online order form.

“American Savings Bank is excited to bring real impact to our community by relaunching the Hawaii Restaurant Card Business Holiday Card program,” said John Ward, executive vice president, chief marketing and product officer of American Savings Bank in a news release. “This program gives businesses and entities the opportunity to multiply the impact of their employee holiday gift program by purchasing Hawaii Restaurant Cards for their employees, clients and partners while making a direct impact on our local restaurant and supply chain industry.”

As the COVID-19 pandemic wears on, Hawaii restaurants have continued to struggle.

A recent Hawaii Restaurant Association survey found that 37% of restaurant owners said their revenue dropped by more than half in September and October compared with the two prior months.

Also, 19% of restaurants surveyed said they lost over 30% of their employees in the same months.

Hawaii restaurants continue to remain in survival mode, according to American Savings Bank, due to reduced foot traffic, supply chain issues and a labor shortage.

Gov. David Ige said in a statement that last year, the Hawaii Restaurant Card program resulted in more than $75 million of direct impact to Hawaii’s local food supply chain – including restaurants, farmers, fishermen, ranchers, producers and distributors – as a result of the statewide economic stimulus initiative.

Read more at Star Advertiser. 

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