BENTON COUNTY, Ind. (WLFI) - Hand sanitizer is almost impossible to find in stores these days. The in-demand item is a need for first responders and other essential businesses. One distillery in Benton County is now making hand sanitizer and donating it.
Usually, Wind Hill Distillery would be making their signature alcohol products. Since the outbreak of COVID-19 the Benton County business has changed its operations.
"We never thought that we would be a pharmaceutical company,” said Tom Clifton Co-Owner of Wind Hill Distillery. “Our intention was to make a beautiful sipping alcohol and here we are making hand sanitizing solution."
The distillery started making hand sanitizer when county leaders noticed their first responders were running out of the vital product.
"Our concerns were the county courthouse and our EMS and EMA and our first responders,” said Bryan Barry a Benton County Commissioner. “Plus our deputies and our police departments were running out too.”
When the local business heard about the need they got to work.
"What we have to do here to make hand sanitizer is we have to jack that proof up to 190,” said Clifton. “So we have to distill our alcohol 5 times to get it that high."
Instead of selling the product, the distillery decided to help out during this time of need by donating them.
"We've donated everything that we've made probably up to 18 gallons so far,” said Clifton. “Tonight we will bottle another nine gallons and that will be shipped out.”
The local business is looking forward to getting back to normal. However, making the hand sanitizer has given them some ideas for the future.
"We thought about having a little bottle of hand sanitizer that you'd hang on the neck of a nice bottle of rum,” said Jim Powell Co-Owner of Wind Hill Distillery. “You know that way when people buy a bottle of rum they get a free bottle of hand sanitizer. There is always a way to get a marketing idea out there.”
The distillery plans to continue making hand sanitizer and donating it to those in need as long as their supplies last. Several other businesses in the community have donated products so that the hand sanitizer was able to be made. To find out more about Wind Hill Distillery visit their Facebook Page.