Zach Gardner, head brewer of Red Horn, said that Red Horn and other beverage producers were first approached by the Williamson County Emergency Management Department because of their ability to handle large-scale production and mixing of liquids.
“We were asked if we could help [Williamson County] procure and mix surface sanitizer and hand sanitizer to have ready as quickly as possible,” Gardner said in an email. “These sanitizers are helping county workers at all levels and departments ensure that they are doing everything they can to prevent the spread of COVID-19.”
So far, Gardner said, the business has produced about 4 gallons of surface sanitizer and 10 gallons of hand sanitizer, with plans to produce a little over 100 gallons of sanitizer over the next week.
Gardner said breweries and distilleries are particularly ideal for the job because they have an abundance of sanitation equipment and chemicals as well as sanitary vessels, sanitary hoses and sanitary pumps that are large enough to mix very large volumes of liquids at once. The businesses also have the equipment necessary to handle large drums and bulk totes of the chemicals needed for production, he said.
Red Horn has the ability to handle up to 150 gallons of material at a time, and as a brewery, it also has easier access to higher concentrated chemicals than the general public does, Gardner said.
Sanitizers only take about five to 10 minutes to mix; the difficulty and need for creativity is found in securing the chemicals that are needed while meeting World Health Organization standards, Gardner said.
Gardner added that some of the county departments the supply has helped so far include vehicle fleet maintenance, road and utility crews, court house employees and judges, EMS, fire and essential government office employees.
“This project is more taking [the] place of beer production, which we have significantly slowed down as a response to slowed business,” Gardner said. “It is part of a county effort to help businesses like ours put our skills, employees and equipment to use during this slowdown due to the necessary distancing measures.”
In between helping the county, Red Horn is still open as a to-go only operation. The business is selling growlers and crowlers of beer to go as well as food, coffee, tea, gift cards and merchandise. Online preorders for food, drinks and beer can be made at www.redhornbrew.com/shop.