Hungry for takeout?

(Image courtesy of The Great American Takeout)

How does some takeout sound right now?

Restaurants throughout Sacramento and across the nation hope that idea spurs home-bound diners to order in tonight during The Great American Takeout, a social media campaign to help the food industry during the coronavirus shutdown.

“Will you commit to eating at least one delivery/takeout meal on 3/24 to help save our nation’s struggling restaurants?” tweeted @TheGATakeout to launch the effort. “For every social post today tagged #thegreatamericantakeout, @SmithfieldFoods will make a $5 donation, up to $100,000, to @COREGives, supporting food & beverage service employees and their families who are directly impacted by a COVID-19 diagnosis.”

Local restaurants and food-related businesses have been hit hard by the stay at home public health orders and are urging their usual customers to show their support. A number of long-established and high-profile restaurants had closed in Sacramento late last year and early this year before coronavirus.

“America’s restaurants are in crisis,” Carrie Boyle, founder of River City Wine Week, posted on Facebook. “On Tuesday, March 24, we are asking Americans to support the restaurant industry by joining #TheGreatAmericanTakeout and eating a delivery or pick-up meal.”

The Great American Takeout attempts to call attention to how the crisis may do long-term damage to the food industry.

“This is no longer about the survival of individual restaurants,” Habit Restaurants CEO Russel Bendel said in a statement. “It’s about the future of our industry. And time has run out. Together, we must act to support each other and our communities in unprecedented ways.”

Organizers are urging families to make takeout a regular habit.

“The Great American Takeout is only the beginning,” wrote organizers on the event’s website, “Keep supporting our nation’s restaurants by ordering takeout or delivery as often as you can.”

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