A coalition of restaurants asked US consumers to participate in “The Great American Takeout” on March 24, as the fallout from the coronavirus pandemic continues to spread throughout America.

The coalition brands included California Pizza Kitchen, Chevys Fresh Mex, El Torito, The Habit Restaurants Inc., Jason’s Deli, Lemonade, Modern Market, Noodles & Company, Panera Bread and Veggie Grill, with various independent restaurants participating across the country.

#TheGreatAmericanTakeout started trending on social media with celebrities, restaurateurs and foodservice news editors posting to Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

Basketball legend LeBron James, who owns about 10% of Blaze Pizza, retweeted the chain’s plea to customers to support #TheGreatAmericanTakeout. That post alone undoubtedly boosted the profile of the event, as James has more than 45 million Twitter followers.

In the US, while many restaurants have closed, takeaway is still available in most states. Unlike New Zealand, America has not gone into full lockdown and restaurant brands are urging the support of consumers while they are still able to operate.