Crunchtime prompted by the pandemic pushed Tustin-based Wahoo’s Fish Taco to get creative about keeping its restaurant employees working, and also helping front-line workers.
Wahoo’s co-founder and face of the brand Wing Lam partnered with Costa Mesa brand and marketing agency Blue C co-founder Eric Morley and KLOS 95.5 FM Marketing Director Wendy Ellis on the California Love Drop initiative to deliver food to healthcare workers and first responders.
Blue C handles the marketing, social media, advertising, digital and promotions for Wahoo’s as its agency of record. The business was moved to Blue C in March and had previously been handled by Gigasavvy.
Other Blue C clients include Monster Energy, Acura, Toyota, Ingram Micro and Coca-Cola.
California Love Drop was created to serve two challenges brought on by COVID-19: how to keep Wahoo’s workers employed when dine-in service was prohibited during the state’s stay-at-home order, while also supporting overworked healthcare and front-line groups.
The program’s first delivery was 300 Wahoo’s meals to Hoag Hospital in Irvine. That’s since ballooned to more than 5,000 meals across nearly 70 deliveries.
The program remains in place.
Some 35 to 40 Wahoo’s jobs were saved as a result of the meal program, according to Blue C’s Morley.
California Love Drop has also pulled in partnerships from several other companies since its launch, including locals such as Yogurtland Franchising Inc. of Irvine, San Clemente’s Left Coast Brewing Co. and Costa Mesa-based Vans Inc.