The Distilled Spirits Council of the United States (DISCUS) today launched an online portal to assist hundreds of distillers who are producing hand sanitizer to help solve the national shortage created by the COVID-19 pandemic.
DISCUS has worked closely with regulators to overcome regulatory hurdles, and distillers now have clear direction to follow TTB, FDA and WHO guidelines.
To date, hundreds of distillers are now using their equipment to produce hand sanitizer. These distillers are invited to add their names to the growing list, and distillers who need help with ingredients or distribution can enter their information in the portal.
“The nation’s distilled spirits industry is mobilizing to aid our communities, hospitals and first responders during this time of crisis,” said Chris Swonger, President and CEO of the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States.
“This new portal will serve as an important resource for the hundreds of distillers who are stepping up to produce sanitizer. This is not only the right thing to do for their communities, but it also allows some of these craft distilleries to keep their stills going, maintain their employees and stay afloat during this crisis. Further, we are coordinating closely with the federal COVID-19 task force as part of the nation’s collective efforts to fight COVID-19.”
The portal will serve as a conduit between distilled spirits manufacturers, related industry suppliers, and distribution channels. It will connect distillers wanting to make hand sanitizer with those who can provide key ingredients, supplies such as bottles and labels, and companies that can help distribute sanitizer.
Distillers who come to the site will complete a response form which sorts them into three categories: distilleries producing sanitizer; distilleries that need supplies; and distilleries that need distribution help. The site will also help connect them with those organizations that would like to have the product donated or those would like to purchase it.
Organizations in need of hand sanitizers or who can provide needed supplies, resources, or distribution mechanisms can search the portal and contact distillers directly.
Partner organizations for this effort include Wine and Spirits Wholesalers of America (WSWA), Consumer Brands Association, American Bakers Association, Food Marketing Institute (FMI), and the Global Cold Chain Alliance (GCCA).
“America’s distillers have stepped up in a big way by producing hand sanitizer for communities in need across the country, in addition to keeping up with increased retail sales,” said Michelle Korsmo, President & CEO, WSWA.
“America’s wholesalers are engaged and ready to deliver these critical supplies to first-responders as part of their ongoing operations that are keeping essential retailers supplied to meet delivery and curbside pick-up sales. This is just one example of the alcohol industry working together during challenging times,” she added.
For questions or more information about the DISCUS COVID-19 Hand Sanitizer Connection Portal, please email [email protected].