(Photo Credit: Kayli Gennaro Photography, Sent from Blinking Owl Distillery)
Many small and local businesses have fundamentally changed their operations in order to cope with the effects of COVID-19. Take-out and delivery have been enough for some, but other restaurants have begun selling produce from their establishments. And if you're a distillery, you can ramp up your efforts in a new area and produce hand sanitizer.
Today we spoke to Co-Owner of Blinking Owl Distillery Robin Christensen. Robin said the distillery was already making sanitizer, but when she heard there was a shortage, she got her team together and decided to double their efforts to help out those in need. The following is a statement from Blinking Owl Distillery:
Blinking Owl Distillery is now making hand sanitizer. When COVID-19 outbreak measures forced Blinking Owl to close its doors for the second time in four months, the craft distillery’s rebound efforts came to a sudden halt and prospects appeared bleaker than ever.
Then the County of Orange called, asking if Blinking Owl Distillery could produce hand sanitizer that officials could then distribute to those in need, including hospitals, police departments and the homeless.
“Of course we said yes – we didn’t know how but we wanted to help and do our part to help fight this pandemic while also trying to stay afloat as a business during these challenging times,” said Robin Christenson, co-owner of Blinking Owl Distillery.
With help from business partner Kirsten Vangsness, who fronted the $60,000 in costs to procure materials to get started, the team sought guidance from the FDA to make hand sanitizer in accordance with the World Health Organization (WHO).
Blinking Owl will be producing an estimated 4,000 gallons of hand sanitizer a week due to widespread demand. The team has been inundated with requests and orders from all over the region, including more than 40 hospitals, senior centers, restaurants, United States Postal Service, schools, fire departments, local grocer chains, police departments, the cities of Anaheim, Santa Ana, California Highway Patrol, Amazon, local Tesla dealerships and more.
Bulk orders inquiries can be submitted to email@example.com while the general public can be order 16-oz bottles that can be picked up at the distillery during select times or can be shipped.
Additionally, Blinking Owl will be donating hand sanitizer to local restaurants in need, as well as senior centers and other medical facilities.