What happens when four manufacturers from different industries get together to help a community?
A unique collective of four companies from the distilling, cannabis, brewing, and Christmas tree supply industries join together to provide much needed hand sanitizer to local EMS, care facilities and other Chaffee County organizations.
SALIDA, Colo. –– March 31, 2020––
When hand sanitizer shortages due to Coronavirus were announced, four companies across Chaffee County had the same reaction to jump at the chance to help fill the void. What started as four companies looking independently to address the shortage quickly led to local businesses working together to make it happen from supplies on hand. The collaboration was initiated by Sterling Stoudenmire, President & CEO of Pure Greens, who contacted PT, who in addition being a Wood’s co-founder also happens to be the Salida Mayor, and Christian Koch, Founder and Director of Brewing Operations at Elevation Beer Co. to see what they we’re planning. Meanwhile, Alan Pursell, Owner of Pursell Manufacturing in Salida reached out to PT to see if he could source ethanol. This led to a happy coincidence and opportunity for each company to contribute a critical ingredient or part to make much needed sanitizer available to the community quickly.
An initial run of 1,500 bottles has been completed and is in the process of being distributed to EMS and critical need organizations in Chaffee County. An additional 3,500 bottles are expected soon and will be available to the public in Salida and Poncha Springs. What makes this product unique is the collaboration from neighboring companies in the cannabis, distilling, brewing, and Christmas tree supply industries coming together to contribute to the creation of hand sanitizer from products already used in their normal production processes.
“We can’t do anything about the toilet paper shortage, but distillers are uniquely able to address the shortage of hand sanitizer” said PT who as Mayor, sees firsthand how resources are needed in the community and how local companies are uniquely positioned to put industrial resources to work.
The challenge came in the form of sourcing the raw ingredients required by the FDA for producing hand sanitizer.
The first stop was Pure Greens, a state-of-the-art cannabis facility that cultivates, extracts, manufactures and distributes cannabis products, including concentrates utilizing precise manufacturing processes. As part of their production process they use isopropyl alcohol and had a large supply in inventory. First problem solved.
The second stop was with Elevation Beer Company in Poncha Springs, CO. Elevation has an award-winning line of beer and has been a collaborator with Wood’s over the years. Brewers use hydrogen peroxide in cleaning protocols and Elevation had it. Second problem solved.
The third stop was Wood’s to source the 95% ABV alcohol needed to meet FDA guidelines. Conveniently, Wood’s produces grain spirits in the production of our vodka and had 150 gallons on hand to contribute. Third problem solved.
The crux quickly turned to the final ingredient, glycerin, and packaging. The answer came from an improbable source when Alan Pursell, co-owner of Pursell Manufacturing Corp. in Poncha Springs, CO happened to call PT exploring how to source alcohol in order to make hand sanitizer. Pursell then approached him with an offer that would ultimately complete the puzzle. Pursell Manufacturing manufactures produces supplies for Christmas Tree lots including tree preservative, in which a key ingredient is glycerin. What’s more, they had thousands of 8oz bottles available for immediate use and a full automated bottling line, too. Glycerin, solved. Bottling and packaging, solved.
Next up were logistics, as considerable movement and coordination were also required:
- Various ingredients were delivered to Wood’s by Elevation
- Pursell delivered bottles to Pure Greens
- Pure Greens printed and applied labels, returning bottles to Pursell
- Pursell collected product from Wood’s and filled bottles
- Each of the collaborating companies will undertake various distribution efforts
The collaborative hand sanitizer is expected to be available on March 31. Sterling Stoudenmire from Pure Greens commented “the product came together incredibly quickly and showcases the power of small businesses pooling resources to creatively solve a problem.” All four companies are looking forward to soon being back to brewing beer, growing weed, getting ready for Christmas, and distilling whiskey but in the meantime, they’re pulling together to help the community weather the coronavirus crises.
Stay safe and well through this outbreak and we’ll toast again soon in the tasting room.
Wood’s High Mountain Distillery