A$AP Ferg is giving back to the unsung heroes of New York City by spotlighting local mom-and-pop corner stores.
According to Variety, the Hip-Hop star took note of how the COVID-19 pandemic was affecting the plight of the city’s independent corner stores, so he teamed up with Snapple to develop a merchandise line and raise money for them. Funds raised from the partnership will reportedly go toward the Bodega and Small Business Group (BSBG) — a Hispanic organization that helps support small business and bodega owners located in New York.
“As a native New Yorker on the pulse of music and art, A$AP Ferg was the perfect creator to collaborate with on this initiative,” Katie Webb — Keurig Dr Pepper’s vice president of brand marketing — shared with Variety. “It’s an authentic partnership that gives back to Snapple’s roots and highlights the enduring culture of New York City.”
In addition to raising money, BroBible reports that Ferg also worked alongside Snapple and director Shomi Patwary to produce “A Snapple Corner Story” — an 11-minute documentary that chronicles the significance behind New York City bodegas and how they’ve long supported their local communities. The film features a variety of bodega stores that the rapper handpicked himself, as well as cultural figures like Dapper Dan, A$AP TyY, Liz Beecroft, Bodega Bamz, Steve Rodriguez, Ghetto Gastro and more who all shared the impact these shops had on their upbringing.
“Man, they’re hubs for the community,” Ferg told Variety. “They’re an intersection between lawyers, garbagemen and students — people from all different facets of life. And when we didn’t have money as kids, they gave us store credit. I didn’t forget that.”
The start of the pandemic posed a huge threat to small business owners who weren’t able to keep their stores open and many of them struggled to recover. With Ferg’s initiative, he hopes to make a difference and help get these local businesses back on their feet the same way they helped him and others in his community growing up.
“So many of them have lost business during the quarantine,” Ferg continued. “Everything really plummeted. So why not provide a foundation of some type of funding for these businesses that always showed us love and support in the past? We have to take care of the people who took care of us.”
Merchandise from Ferg’s collaboration with Snapple — including hats, T-shirts, hoodies and socks — is now available for purchase. The documentary — “A Snapple Corner Story” — is also available to stream on YouTube.
For more information about the partnership, click here.