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From whiskey bottles to hand sanitizer: How Cleveland Whiskey teamed up with Cleveland Clinic to fill a demand

Posted at 2:11 PM, Mar 25, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-25 14:11:00-04

CLEVELAND — Always testing the traditional production of whiskey, Cleveland Whiskey has crossed over into producing a differnet type of product : hand sanitizer. The local company teamed up with the Cleveland Clinic to formulate, blend and bottle hand sanitizer for the hospital system.

"We jumped at the chance to collaborate with Cleveland Clinic to help supply the system with hand sanitizer,” said Tom Lix, founder and CEO of Cleveland Whiskey said in a news release. “Our mission is to make good whiskey and do the right thing, and this is definitely doing the right thing. This will help protect both frontline healthcare workers and the patients they care for. It’s the best way we can help our community.”

With 51,000 caregivers across Cleveland Clinic’s main campus and 11 regional hospitals, there's a demand for hand sanitizer.

“Hand sanitizer is a vital component that helps us protect our caregivers and patients. It was important to us to identify a local supplier that could meet the FDA requirements and work quickly with us to meet our health system’s demand," said Allison Riffle, assistant director of Pharmacy at Cleveland Clinic, in a news release.

The first run of production was approximately 1,000 bottles that were distributed among the Cleveland Clinic locations.

The clinic said more bottles will be available as production picks up, but they need other companies to join the initiative.

The Manufacturing Advocacy and Growth Network (MAGNET), an organization that helped design the technology Cleveland Whiskey uses to produce whiskey, is working on ways companies can retool to help the crisis.

"The ability for these companies to retool and focus resources where they are needed most is a real asset to our region and the country. If you think you are a manufacturer who can contribute to making needed hospital and medical supplies, please contact us," said Ethan Karp, President and CEO of MAGNET, in a news release.

RELATED: Lakewood distillery making hand sanitizer

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