Litchfield Distillery in Litchfield, Conn. has ceased normal production of its spirits to instead provide a public service: free disinfectant alcohol spray.

When hand sanitizer started flying of the shelves due to coronavirus, Litchfield Distillery partner Jack Baker said it made sense for his company to take action.

“Our industry makes high proof spirits and there became a public need for it; it automatically made sense to offer it to the public,” he said. Baker said additives normally found in commercial hand sanitizers, like aloe, are not readily available, “but we have the alcohol part,” so they decided to make a spray

The spray is not officially approved as a healthcare or sanitation product, but the CDC recommends 60 percent alcohol solutions to kills germs, and Litchfield’s spray is 130 proof.

Baker said the distillery is giving out the spray to healthcare workers, shelters and soup kitchens. He said many people are also calling about it and “a constant stream of people” is coming into the distillery looking for a bottle of the spray.

“When people walk in and say ‘I have an 80-year-old dad who’s in chemo,'” we give them a bottle.

Baker said he’s not sure how the pandemic will affect normal business at the distillery. Restaurants and bars are closed, which make up the bulk of their business. But on the other hand, liquor stores are doing well.

Regardless, Baker said their main priority is public service, and he believes any company who can offer a public service right now is “obligated to do so.”

“We stopped normal production to focus on what’s needed in community,” he said.

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