Swiss fragrance producer Givaudan said Thursday it would produce 60 tonnes of hand sanitizer over the next two weeks to meet chronic shortages of the product needed to tackle the coronavirus pandemic.
The world's biggest fragrance and flavoring company said it had set up a dedicated production line at its factory in Geneva for hand sanitizer, which would be donated to local hospitals, transportation workers and others in need.
The company, which supplies prestige names in perfumes including Christian Dior and Prada, said in a statement that its Geneva factory would produce the equivalent of around 700,000 bottles of hand sanitizer by mid-April.
Further production lines were being created at its factories in the US and other European countries to help meet growing demand, it said.
Givaudan has thus joined the ranks of a range of breweries and other companies who have transformed part of their production lines to help meet spiking global demand for hand sanitizer, seen as an essential tool in fighting the COVID-19 pandemic which has infected nearly one million people worldwide.
"In a short space of time, we've managed to establish dedicated production lines of hand sanitizer to produce up to eight tonnes a day, helping to keep our employees protected, but also allowing us to supply to those on the front line, including local hospitals," company chief Gilles Andrier said.
Givaudan said that its production sites in other countries would also provide hand sanitizer locally.
Its French sites in Pomacle and Avignon had provided over nearly 1.5 tonnes of hand sanitizer to local hospitals and others, while its Ashford site in Britain had partnered with a local brewery in providing hand sanitizer to nearby hospitals.