Southern Company, local distillery partner for hand sanitizer

April 2, 2020

The Southern Company system’s response to the coronavirus is rooted in Our Values and our commitment to Safety First for our teammates, customers and communities. That includes working to ensure our teams have adequate supplies of things like hand sanitizer that can help prevent the spread of COVID-19.

With hand sanitizer flying off the shelves in stores and in short supply around the country, Southern Company turned to Atlanta’s Old Fourth Distillery to help meet the system’s need for the product in a partnership that enables good hand hygiene and supports a small business in our community.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stresses the importance of hand cleanliness in helping the fight against COVID-19. When soap and water aren’t available, the CDC recommends using hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.

Old Fourth, established in 2014, has ditched its typical products, and its team of 10 has dedicated itself to helping serve the community.

“About three weeks ago, we were just a little distillery making vodka, gin and bourbon, and living a pretty relaxed lifestyle,” Craig Moore, owner of Old Fourth Distillery, said. “Now, not so much.”

When COVID-19 began to dramatically affect the U.S., Moore and his team were inspired by a distillery in Washington that began to make hand sanitizer. Old Fourth sprang into action and began to make hand sanitizer itself for its local neighborhood.

“We saw the work they were doing (in Washington) and figured we could use our high-proof alcohol and buy a little bit of aloe and get it into our community,” Moore said. “We made about 10 gallons, not a whole lot more than just for the community.”

Keeping us safe, while supporting the community

As word began to spread about the tremendous work the distillery was doing, Southern Company contacted Moore about a partnership that would help meet the system’s needs and support a local business at a time when communities are navigating through tough challenges presented by the pandemic.

“Southern Company is committed to helping our communities thrive and supporting them in good times and bad,” Jeff Franklin, Southern Company senior vice president of Supply Chain Management said. “Old Fourth Distillery is doing the community a wonderful service and we are glad to support them. This partnership is an example of how we’re all thinking differently to do our part to keep our communities healthy – physically and economically.”

Shipments of Old Fourth’s essential product will begin soon from the Georgia Power Material Distribution Center in Forest Park to critical locations across the Southern Company system. The distillery is also providing hand sanitizer to the Georgia Emergency Management Agency.

“It has been a tremendous amount of work just to get to get all the materials and everything involved with the process going,” Moore said. “We set up an entirely new business in a matter of three weeks.

“It changes literally every day. Every day we get a little bit better than the day before.”