New portal to help whisky industry create sanitiser

The Scotch Whisky Association is launching an online portal to help with the supply of hand sanitiser to frontline health and social services, emergency services, local communities and other industries in need of it across the UK.

A number of Scotch whisky producers can either supply high-strength alcohol for the production of hand sanitiser or produce hand sanitiser themselves, with some distillers able to do this at scale.

The SWA is working closely with government and relevant authorities, including HMRC and the Health and Safety Executive and now have a green light from regulators to follow WHO guidelines in the production of hand sanitiser from denatured alcohol.

Scotch whisky producers are being invited to submit details to the portal of what they can provide, be that either high-strength alcohol or hand sanitiser.

The portal will help distillers to source necessary ingredients, whilst organisations in need of sanitiser will be able to specify their requirements. Those who can support with packaging and distribution will also be able to state on the portal how they can assist.

SWA chief executive Karen Betts said: ‘Distillers want to support health services on the frontline of fighting coronavirus wherever we can, and also other essential services that need additional supplies of hand sanitiser in these difficult times.

‘We now have the green light from government, which means that our distilleries can supply high-strength alcohol to existing hand sanitiser producers where they are running low on stocks. We can also produce hand sanitiser at some Scotch Whisky sites, for local provision or – with the right packaging and distribution partners – for provision at scale to those organisations who need it urgently.

‘The new portal will serve as an important tool for our companies to help meet the demand in Scotland and across the UK and for those organisations that need supplies of hand sanitiser.

‘Scotland has the distilleries, the skilled workforce and the drive to make a difference and I hope that distillers, supply chain companies, distribution partners and those in need of hand sanitiser will get in touch and use the portal.’

The portal will connect distillers wanting to make hand sanitiser with those who can provide key ingredients, supplies such as bottles, pump-action closures and labels, and companies that can help distribute sanitiser to organisations in need.

Scotch whisky producers and other relevant businesses will be asked to complete a response form via the SWA website, and the SWA will act as a clearing house for companies seeking the necessary guidance to begin production at scale or in the local community.

Those interested should visit www.scotch-whisky.org.uk/insights/coronavirus

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