Distilleries are swapping alcohol for hand sanitiser during Coronavirus crisis
The changes in direction come as demand for effective hand wash soars.
Increasingly during the Covid-19 outbreak there are stories of how communities and organisations are pitching in to help each other manage the significant problems that the virus is causing.
With governments and health agencies urging people to improve their basic hygiene by regularly washing their hands use of hand sanitisers has boomed. In fact, the requirement for hand-washing gel has grown so much that sanitisers are one of an increasing number of products that are in noticeably short supply.
In response to this need for effective hand wash many alcohol firms have stepped in to help to plug the gap where supplies of regular sanitisers are falling short.
Absolut – the Swedish firm famed for its vodka – was among the first to dip its toe into the scientific experiment by offering to supply authorities with quantities of its alcohol so that sanitiser could be produced (with a suitable alcohol proof, of course: at least 60% is needed for hand gel to be effective at killing germs).
Bacardi, meanwhile, has also dedicated production time to manufacture 70% proof alcohol to use in sanitisers that will then be donated to emergency services and charities. It intends to help to produce 500,000 bottles.
Elsewhere, Scottish firm Brewdog has started making its own sanitising gel. The purveyor of specialist beers and gin has developed Brewgel, which has been produced at its own distillery. The gel will be donated to those who need it.
Plenty of smaller firms are also joining the effort.
In the UK, Silent Pool Gin has created funky bottles of hand sanitiser that will be given away free from its shop and with online orders…
…While Old Fourth Distillery in Atlanta has been offering to fill up people’s empty bottles with its own special hand gel formula.
Although it is questionable whether social media rumours such as simply pouring bottles of vodka over your hands provide any medical benefit, the companies that are producing these hand gels have tested them to make sure that they are of actual use.
The international reaction to Covid-19 has been varied to say the least; and, as the pandemic shows no signs of being resolved any time soon, it is reassuring to know that businesses have the vision and knowledge to adapt their workings – benefitting community health as well as their undoubtedly unpredictable finances.