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Bacardi ramps up hand sanitiser production

Family-owned firm Bacardi has pledged to produce 1.1 million litres of alcohol for hand sanitiser production, while Indian spirits group Radico Khaitan has also vowed to make the disinfectant.

The Bombay Sapphire distillery in Hampshire, England, will help to produce hand sanitiser

Last week, Bacardi shifted production at its Puerto Rico distillery to provide raw materials to make hand sanitiser.

The family-owned spirits producer has now expanded its commitment to make the disinfectant by pledging to supply 267,000 gallons (1.1m litres) of alcohol.

Eight of Bacardi’s manufacturing sites across the US, Mexico, France, England, Italy and Scotland have joined the efforts.

The distilleries providing alcohol include the Bacardi Bottling Corporation in Florida; the Bacardi rum distillery in Mexico; the Grey Goose vodka site in Cognac, France; Bombay Samphire’s Laverstoke Mill distillery in Hampshire, England; Martini in Pessione, Italy; Dewar’s in Aberfeldy, Scotland; and Angel’s Envy in Louisville, Kentucky.

The firm is providing alcohol at cost to select partner companies looking to ramp up their production of hand sanitisers for commercial sale.

Bacardi also said these “temporary, emergency actions” will not impact the supply of the company’s brands.

“Over our 158-year history, we have risen to many challenges and we are doing the same again in response to covid-19,” said Jean-Marc Lambert, senior vice president, global operations for Bacardi.

“All our brands and partners involved in this initiative will help people most in need benefit from the supply of these hand sanitizers. Our goal is to make a very real difference in the fight against covid-19.”

Earlier this week, Bacardi pledged an additional US$3m in financial aid to support bars and restaurants “debilitated” by the coronavirus shutdown. The funding is in addition to Bacardi-owned Patrón Tequila’s US$1m pledge last week.

Radico Khaitan

Meanwhile, Radico Khaitan, owner of Rampur Indian single malt whisky and Jaisalmer gin, will also begin production of hand sanitiser at its Rampur Distillery on a permanent basis to “support ongoing global health care”.

The hand sanitiser, made with 80% alcohol, will be supplied to government hospitals, pharmacies and grocery stores in India this week. It will be rolled out globally in the coming months.

Bacardi and Radico Khaitan are among a large number of spirits producers meeting demand for hand sanitiser production, including Diageo, Pernod Ricard and Brewdog.

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