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Business is booming for Utah distillery as it focuses efforts on hand sanitizer

By Felicia Martinez, KSL TV | Posted - Apr. 3, 2020 at 7:22 a.m.



MIDVALE — A Utah distillery is getting a lot of business — and it isn’t for the booze.

“Our business has completely changed,” said Kirk Sedgwick, the owner of Outlaw Distillery in Midvale.

Hand sanitizer has become a hot commodity these days, and people are turning to the local businesses to get it.

“We went from making all liquor to making 90% hand sanitizer now,” Sedgwick said.

With the lingering threat of the coronavirus, sanitizer is nearly impossible to find at stores.

“Nope, couldn’t find anything,” said Thomas Dunford, a customer who purchased a handful of sanitizers for his family and his business.

However, Sedgewick is getting more than walk-in business. In fact, it was one particular order that started the demand.

“We got a compounding pharmacy that contacted us, and after they did then everybody started,” he said.

Calls from hospitals to trucking companies to first responders began pouring in. He said making the sanitizer is a fairly easy process, but there are some guidelines.

“The formula they’ve got us using is the World Health Organization’s formula for the hand rub, and it is 80% or greater alcohol content,” Sedgwick said. “It needs to be high like that to get most of your germs. Then we are mixing in a little hydrogen peroxide and a little bit of glycerin.”

Normally it takes two to three years for the alcohol inside one barrel to be ready for selling in bottles, but with hand sanitizer it only takes about six days.

“The biggest thing we’re trying to get people to do is buy what you need for now,” Sedgwick said.

If a company is planning on buying in bulk, the distillery sells it cheaper. However, they’re asking the customers to supply their own containers.

After six years in the distillery business, Sedgwick is still in a bit of shock that he’s now suddenly supplying customers with a product they can’t consume.

“Even two weeks ago, if you’d told me I’d be making hand sanitizer, I’d tell you you were crazy,” he said.

For more information visit, visit Outlaw Distillery’s Facebook page.

Felicia Martinez

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