Junee Licorice and Chocolate Factory is on a mission to help to save an iconic Tumut brewery from going under, following devastation due to bushfires, flooding and COVID-19, and the challenges presented by roadworks at its doorstep.
For 18 months roadworks, including the construction of a roundabout directly in front of the Tumut River Brewing Company (TRBC), posed significant trading difficulties.
Not wanting to stand by and watch another business suffer, Rhiannon and Neil Druce from Junee Licorice and Chocolate Factory have jumped on board to host a fundraiser to help TRBC, which will be held on Friday 22 September from 1 to 10 pm.
“It’s a small business wanting to help out another small business,” said Junee Licorice and Chocolate Factory manager Rhiannon.
“We sell their (TRBC) beer and they stock our chocolate … we’ve worked with them since the early days of both of our businesses.
“We feel for them regarding their financial situation and we’re trying to find ways to help them out,” she said.
Rhiannon said the chocolate factory was on a mission to provide financial support to TRBC and introduce the brewery to people in the region who may not have had the opportunity to visit Tumut and the brewery.
“It’s not going to be your typical fundraiser … it’s going to be a regular pizza night with live music, tapas food and a fun night for everyone to come and hang out with their friends,” she said.
“It will be nice alfresco dining with your friends supporting a local brewery and there will be Tumut River beers on tap.
“It’s business as usual for the customer where they will be spending the regular amount and profits from the night will go to Tumut River.”
Brewery owner Tim Martin was blown away by the kind gesture and is grateful for any help people can afford.
TRBC was founded in 2012 by two mates, Tim, and Simon Rossato, and it now employs 27 people across two states.
In August when the company had reached a tipping point, Tim called on supporters to help them get back on their feet instead of asking the bank for more money.
“I know that if my business goes back to normal, it will be profitable, but not if I took any more debt,” Tim said.
“We know that things will pick up in October and from a wholesale perspective, we are shipping twice as much beer as we did last year.”
TRBC launched a crowdfunding campaign and offered exclusive merchandise and even the opportunity for supporters to have beer named after them.
The company raised $57,063 by 18 September.
Junee Licorice and Chocolate Factory recommends booking a table if people want to be seated near the live music, however, there will always be room for those who spontaneously decide to attend the factory for a beer.
Follow the link to book a table for the fundraiser.