Local distillery turns spirits into hand sanitizer amid COVID-19 outbreak


NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – A local distillery is turning spirits into sanitizer amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Corsair Distillery is using their byproducts, like ethanol and Gin, to make bulk sanitizer and they are giving it out for free.

“We had some large batches of gin at very high proof and we said well let’s knock it down to 140 proof which is over the 120 you need for sanitizing and we started bottling it,” owner Darek Bell told News 2.

They started by word of mouth for those in the restaurant industry or community organizations, but with an overwhelming response, Bell saw a greater need.

“You know it’s been really tough. We’ve gotten some emails and text and what not from people who are really struggling and they are really hurting and they are scared because they can’t find anything. I wish we could make toilet paper as well, but we can’t. It’s just a sign of the times.”

He says bottling the sanitizer, dubbed “Gintervention,” gives his employees work while filling the needs of neighbors.

“I’m a Nashville native. I love Nashville and I think we come together in tough times and so I hope people will come together now and we will get through this, we get through everything,” he explained.

Hundreds of people with smiles on their faces stopped by to pick up the large bottles of sanitizer.

“I feel like Nashville is really going through it right now and it’s just so nice to see the love and the warmth in this community from the tornado volunteerism that happened after that and now things like this are just heartwarming, I think we all need it so kudos to them. It’s awesome,” said Melissa Steadman who stumbled upon the find.

The distillery plans to bottle up and pass out 1,000 bottles a day for as long as they can. They have also ordered some smaller containers they plan to bottle in the coming days. 

Corsair Distillery is distributing the bulk sanitizer from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. every day at 601 Merritt Avenue.

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