The Ajinomoto Group donates to the Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund in the US
As part of a larger COVID-19 response effort in the US and worldwide, Ajinomoto Health and Nutrition North America Inc. (AHN) and Ajinomoto Co., Inc., a winner of the World Branding Awards, will be contributing US$100k/£82k to the Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund (AALDEF), an organisation addressing the needs of Asian Americans who have been disproportionately impacted by the pandemic.
The donation coincides with the launch of a campaign to “Take Out Hate”, which encourages Americans to support their local Asian-owned restaurants by ordering meals to go (known as “takeout”) and sharing messages of support on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.
Asian American restaurants have been hit particularly hard by the pandemic due to the unfounded fears surrounding the origins of the virus. This has led to the shuttering of Asian restaurants at significantly higher rates than others. Without funnelling resources and showing local support for this community in need, it is easy to imagine a post-COVID world without so many of the restaurants that have become neighbourhood staples on the American landscape.
“The need for unity and understanding has never been greater,” says Tia Rains, Senior Director of Public Relations at AHN. “We are proud of our heritage, and as the company that was founded on the discovery of MSG, we are no stranger to the impact of unfair stigma. We all have a role to play in supporting our communities, promoting understanding and advocating for truth.”
AALDEF has a 46-year history of protecting the civil rights of Asian American communities across the country. Today, the importance of their work to address critical needs and provide resources – particularly for Asian restaurant owners and workers facing pandemic-related discrimination – cannot be understated.
“Relief takes a collective effort,” says Rains. “We stand with those in our industry facing increased adversity, and as part of that, we are pleased to be making a contribution to this respected organisation and to the work that it will support.”