Diageo pledges more then 8 million bottles of sanitiser for frontline healthcare workers

To help protect frontline healthcare workers in the fight against COVID-19, one of the world's biggest spirits makers is pledging to enable the creation of more than eight million bottles of hand sanitiser by donating up to two million litres of alcohol to manufacturing partners.

Published 25th Mar 2020
Updated 25 th Mar 2020

Diageo, maker of Johnnie Walker and Smirnoff, will provide Grain Neutral Spirit (GNS) – a 96 per cent strength ethyl alcohol used primarily in the production of vodka and gin – and make it available at no cost to hand sanitiser producers in multiple countries, to help overcome shortages in healthcare systems.

The drinks giant said the donation will enable the production of more than eight million 250ml bottles of hand sanitiser around the world, with 500,000 litres of GNS to be made available for national healthcare systems and workers across the UK and Ireland.

“Healthcare workers are at the forefront of fighting this pandemic and we are determined to do what we can to help protect them,” said Ivan Menezes, Chief Executive of Diageo.

“This is the quickest and most effective way for us to meet the surging demand for hand sanitiser around the world.”

It joins the likes of Louis Vuitton, who are making sanitiser for the French authorities; Pernod Ricard who is producing sanitiser at all its U.S. distilleries; and Anheuser-Busch, which has pledged over one million bottles as well.

Driven by a passion for all things drinks-related, Sean writes for The Scotsman extensively on the subject. He can also sometimes be found behind the bar at the world famous Potstill bar in Glasgow where he continues to enhance his whisky knowledge built up over 10 years advising customers from all over the world on the wonders of our national drink. Recently, his first book was published. Dubbed Gin Galore, it explores Scotland's best gins and the stories behind those that make them.
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