El Dorado Hills distillery making, donating hand sanitizer to essential workers

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EL DORADO HILLS, Calif. (KTXL) -- Every day, Dry Diggings Distillery owner Casey Newman pours his heart and soul into his El Dorado Hills business.

“Since the coronavirus hit, we had to close our tasting room and that’s how we make 95% of our revenue," he said.

Instead of calling it quits, Newman's distillery is ramping up production. Rather than bottling vodka, whiskey and rum, they’re shifting focus to hand sanitizer as supplies dwindle across the country.

“It’s a really personal issue to me because three of my sisters are in the medical industries. They are helping people every day," Newman told FOX40. "And this just makes me feel like at least I can help out in my own way and kind of protect them.”

Dry Diggings is not accepting any money for the hand sanitizer but donating it to essential workers.

“Hospitals, police stations, fire stations, nursing homes. We want to make sure we’re getting it to the people that can’t stay home," Newman said.

The shift in production was simpler than Newman originally thought.

“Typically we make food-grade alcohol that is made to drink and the reason why you just can’t put that on your hands is it’s going to destroy your skin. It’s going to make you dry and crack and things like that," he said. "So we’ve taken that food-grade alcohol and denatured it by adding hydrogen peroxide and we also add a hand moisturizer.”

They’ve already given away more than 100 gallons to 10 different organizations -- and they don’t plan to slow down anytime soon.

“I just want to continue to try to help everybody out. At least if we have to close our doors, we’re going to feel good about it," Newman said.

Newman is raising money to pay for supplies because he is donating all of the hand sanitizer he makes.

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