Has the government fallen short when it comes to helping small businesses during these unprecedented times? Restaurants, bars and other businesses of that nature seem to be struggling the most. According to a recent report, 60% of restaurant closures during this pandemic are permanent. How much can we blame local, state and federal government’s changing guidelines for these business closures? Possibly, a lot.
A Texas business that did reopening right
Natasha DeHart, founder and blender at Bendt Distilling Co, joined Bold TV to share how constant change is affecting her business. She reopened her distillery’s outdoor area over the summer for a couple of months until every brewery, winery and distillery was shut down across the state — even those with outdoor accommodations. The news came as a shock to DeHart who took every precaution: adding sanitizing and hand-washing stations, using disposable cups, instituting a drink limit and only allowing small groups in at a time. Now, with guideline changes coming in weekly, she doesn’t know if she has the time and money to adjust to fickle protocols.
Excess product in a now-flooded market
Not only did she spend money to re-open her business safely, but she also produced a product she never anticipated. Hers was one of many businesses that answered the call for sanitizer when the country experienced a shortage at the start of the pandemic. They took up the mantle in order to help frontline workers and families stay clean and safe during a tough time. Fortunately for the country, supply caught up. Unfortunately, distilleries everywhere are now stuck with an excess of product they have no way of unloading.
The pandemic was not expected, and nobody knew exactly the right way to handle it in the beginning. The promise from our government was that small businesses and individuals would receive support, but what DeHart’s story shows us is that inconsistencies in decision-making have put a lot of strain on business owners. Now, these entrepreneurs hope for some form of relief in the end of 2020. Will they get it?