A small distillery in the southern coastal town of Grimstad has responded to the Corona crisis by shifting from production of a local brand of the strong traditional Norwegian liquor known as aquavit (water of life) to a hand disinfectant similar to Antibac. It’s clearly connected to life as well.
“The normal producers (of hand disinfectant) have problems meeting demand,” Odd Nelvik of the distillery Det norske brenneri told newspaper Dagens Næringsliv’s online news service Smak that covers food and drink. “So we just had to start production.”
After its own export market for its powerful aquavit liquor evaporated in the Corona crisis, the distillery had extra capacity and secured express authorization from Norwegian authorities for production and distribution. “Now we’re producing as much anti-bacterial disinfectant as we can, as fast as we can,” Nelvik told Smak.
Det norske brenneri has so far produced 24,000 small bottles, with the number expected to grow to 140,000 by the end of the week.
“There’s huge demand,” Nelvik told Smak. Distribution has mostly centered on the area around Grimstad, but he said many nursing homes had been in contact along with companies still open for business. “There’s a lot of desperation around the country,” he said.