It's a crisis like this that drives people to the point of needing a drink, but Litchfield Distillery doesn't want you to drink their newest product -- they are trying to keep you healthy with it.

Jack Baker and his brothers, who opened the Litchfield Distillery six years ago, wanted to do something for the community when the outbreak of the coronavirus hit, so when hand sanitizer became scarce, they sprung into action with something they had plenty of; alcohol.

They are now using their resources to bottle what they are calling their 130 proof alcohol solution. Jack Baker told how the idea came about:

We recognized its potential as a sanitizer and when this broke out we were using it for ourselves and thought we could offer it to the public and we saw there were other distilleries doing it as well.

So now the production line at their distillery is cranking out bottles and bottles of this powerful sanitizer, and Jack Baker said they are sharing it with those who need it.

The emergency services, health workers, people at risk. We are trying to accommodate everyone with something but we are being inundated with phone calls and walk-ins looking for sanitizers.

Just remember this spray is not officially approved as a health or sanitation product, but the CDC recommends 60 percent alcohol solutions to kills germs, and that's what you're getting and then some. Just remember it's for your hands, it's not to be used to alter your mood.

The distillery has been providing many updates regarding their procedures, ingredients and distribution guidelines via their Facebook Page. Here's the latest as of this writing:

We will continue to offer hand sanitizer to essential businesses and high-risk individuals. Our hours today are 11am to 4pm. Please note the following changes to the program:

- Hand Sanitizer will be distributed by the LOADING DOCK at the distillery. This is toward the back of our parking lot.

- Today we will allow Spirit sales at our main entrance door. One person will be allowed to enter at a time, please be patient and don't be offended if we ask you to apply hand sanitizer.

- Please be careful and drive slowly in our parking lot. It's getting crowded and no one needs the extra hassle of a fender bender.

- For larger organizations (like fire departments, medical offices, etc.) it would be helpful if you can bring containers for us to fill as packaging continues to be in short supply. Large 32 oz. spray bottles are ideal.

- For high-risk individuals, we are only providing 4 ounces at this time.



- The sanitizer is free.

- We are not able to ship any hand sanitizer.

- Washing your hands for 20 seconds with hot water and soap is preferred method is you are at home. Don't waste hand sanitizer if you have access to a sink and soap.

- Our phones are overwhelmed. Only call if you are in a high risk category. Please be brief.

- Please check social media for updates before coming or calling the distillery.


Q: What are the ingredients in the sanitizer ?

A: Ethanol (alcohol), Hydrogen Peroxide and Glycerol. The Ethanol is the active antisepsis.

Q: Where did this formula come from?

A: We are using guidance from the Center for Disease Control (CDC), The World Health Organization (WHO), The FDA and the Alcohol Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB). We are currently using the formula recommended by WHO.

Q: Are you licensed to produce hand sanitizer?

A: We operate under a Distilled Spirits Producer License (DSP) issued by the TTB. This license allows us to produce alcoholic beverages. Last week the TTB sent a memo to all alcohol producers allowing for the immediate production of hand sanitizer at all distilleries.

Q: How do you know you are doing it right?

A: Our in-house lab has equipment capable of analyzing alcohol to a very high degree of accuracy. The sanitizer formula is prepared by one of our staff who holds a chemical engineering degree from UConn and is currently in a masters program at Uconn. She has 3 years experience at Litchfield Distillery.

Q: How do you make alcohol at Litchfield Distillery?

A: We use local grains, cook them to convert the starches to sugar, add yeast to ferment the sugars, pump the ferment mash to a still where we boil off the alcohol.

Here's the story as covered by Fox 61:

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