On March 18th, on the evening news, Paul Todd, GaMEP project manager, saw a story of a distillery in Atlanta that had shifted gears to produce hand sanitizer. In the interview, Old 4th Distillery said they were struggling to increase production. Paul went to their website and filled out the Contact Us form, introducing the GaMEP to the company and offering his assistance. Later that evening, the company had responded to Paul and the two met to discuss the opportunity further.
At the point they met, the company had been giving away free bottles of hand sanitizer to neighbors, but after having more than 600 people stop by in one day, they decided to switch gears. They are now giving away free hand sanitizer to local first responders, and have secured a contract with GEMA to make industrial quantities of hand sanitizer, which GEMA is then distributing to other agencies and first responders around the state.
GaMEP and Old 4th Distillery agreed that if the 10-person company was going to produce industrial quantities of hand sanitizer under contract, they could use help from the GaMEP in sourcing materials.
Since that initial discussion, the GaMEP has done the following for Old 4th Distillery:
- Connected the company with two GaMEP client, one in South Georgia and the other in Atlanta, that make plastic bottles and jugs.
- Located a source for Ethanol out of St. Louis, and has had a truckload of material delivered to their plant.
- Connected them with a manufacturer in Mableton, GA, who will be supplying Old 4th Distillery with containers, so that the company can transfer a tanker truck quantity of isopropyl alcohol to these smaller containers.
- In discussion with an industrial supply chain to provide the company with pump dispensers.
- Consulted on the issue of how to label empty bottles.
Paul is continuing to be a resource for Old 4th Distillery, providing them with any information and connections to our clients, partners, and Georgia Tech, so that the company can continue to branch out into this new product line and serve a critical need during the COVID-19 pandemic.
By Katie Takacs, with the Georgia Manufacturing Extension Partnership