Hand sanitizer making

Grand Teton Distillery head distiller John Boczar transfers neutral grain spirits while making a batch of hand sanitizer last week. Wyoming Gov. Mark Gordan announced plans to aid distilleries making hand sanitizer in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Wyoming distilleries and breweries will receive some money from the Wyoming Business Council so they can help alleviate the shortage of hand sanitizer that plagued stores and consumers since the coronavirus reared its head.

Gov. Mark Gordon directed the council, which is the state's economic development agency, to allocate funding to support the businesses' efforts to produce the stuff.

“The Governor is utilizing 'Imminent Threat Grants' funds available through the 'Community Development Block Grant Program' (CDBG) to pay for the supplies distillers need in order to produce mass quantities of hand sanitizer in an effort to slow the spread of COVID-19,” a press release said.

“This collaborative effort represents the Wyoming spirit we all know and love,” Gordon said. “Folks banding together in challenging economic times to support public health and advance the greater good. We also recognize that other industries are stepping up and that this situation is temporary.”

Some distilleries and breweries, as well as other types of companies, have already begun making and distributing sanitizers. New West Knifeworks and Grand Teton Distillery, for example, have begun handing out bottles that they teamed up to produce.

Some of the local brands that have committed to the effort are Melvin Brewing, Wyoming Whiskey and Jackson Hole Still Works, the press release said.

Others are Backwards Distillery in Casper, Koltiska Distillery in Sheridan, Chronicles Distilling in Cheyenne and Pine Bluffs Distilling in Pine Bluffs.

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Contact Jennifer Dorsey at jennifer@jhnewsandguide.com or 732-5908.

Jennifer Dorsey is chief copy editor and Business section coordinator. She worked in Washington, D.C., and Chicago before moving to the Tetons.

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