Okanagan Spirits Master Distiller Peter Von Hahn has been working on his days off to provide sanitizer to those most at risk in the community. (Contributed)

Okanagan Spirits Master Distiller Peter Von Hahn has been working on his days off to provide sanitizer to those most at risk in the community. (Contributed)

Okanagan Spirits donating free sanitizer to those most at risk during COVID-19 pandemic

The Okanagan distillery’s spirits that would have become whisky or gin is now being denatured to make hand sanitizer

Okanagan Spirits Craft Distillery is stepping up to help those most at risk in the community, providing free hand sanitizer during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Many of B.C.’s True Craft Distilleries, including Okanagan Spirits, have voluntarily converted part of its spirits operation into a hand-sanitizer production line in an effort to protect the community, as well as front line medical and essential services workers during this crisis.

“There is a nationwide shortage of hand sanitizer and B.C.’s Craft Distilleries in the Craft Distiller’s Guild of B.C. were some of the first to jump into action to help flatten the curve,” said Tyler Dyck, president of Craft Distillers Guild of British Columbia.

READ MORE: Social media a blessing and a curse during time of crisis: B.C. communication expert

Okanagan Spirits has donated 7,000 bottles of sanitizer to hospitals, old-age homes, firefighters, paramedics, essential service workers as well as delivering to those in need in the community. Production is moving fast and Okanagan Spirits is filling any bottles they can in an effort to reach as many people as possible, using anything from one ounce to four-litre bottles.

Touring tasting host John McNamara along with his co-workers have been working hard, bottling roughly 3,000 litres since March 18.

“Our staff have done an excellent job at booking and staggering pickup times so one healthy representative from a qualifying front line medical or essential services group can pick up their order,” said Dyck.

“We have a staff member at the door and everyone has been spraying their hands and respecting the social distancing rules that we have in place. We feel we have done our best to ensure a safe environment for our guest and staff and people coming in for this much-needed sanitizer have been very grateful and respectful.”

READ MORE: RCMP, firefighters rally in support for health care workers in Kelowna

Master Distiller Peter Von Hahn has been going in on his days off to fill the much-needed bottles to help flatten the curve and while he and others are donating so much of their time, the distiller hasn’t asked for financial help until now.

Okanagan Distillers is asking for public support by purchasing its whiskies, gins, vodkas, genuine absinthe etc. The proceeds from each sale will help offset the costs and keep staff working on this crucial project.


Daniel Taylor
Reporter, Kelowna Capital News
Email me at daniel.taylor@kelownacapnews.com
Follow me on Twitter

CoronavirusLocal Business

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Three Lake Country firefighters scaled Spion Kop in support of their Movember fundraiser. (District of Lake Country photo)
Lake Country firefighters scale Spion Kop for Movember fundraiser

The three firefighters did the arduous 2.63-kilometre climb while breathing bottled air

Quigley Elementary. (Google Maps)
Another COVID-19 case confirmed at Kelowna’s Quigley Elementary

Health authority confirmed a case Sunday, just two days after a separate case was announced

Former Vancouver Canucks goaltender Richard Brodeur discussing his paintings with the executive director of the Arts Council of the Central Okanagan Kirsteen McCulloch. (Contributed)
Former Canucks goalie King Richard’s art displayed at Kelowna gallery

Richard Brodeur starred in the Vancouver Canucks’ 1982 Stanley Cup run

Real Canadian Superstore in Kelowna. (Google Maps)
Kelowna Superstore employee tests positive for COVID-19

The last day the employee worked was Nov. 23

RCMP. (Phil McLachlan - Black Press Media)
RCMP issue warning after woman assaulted while walking in Rutland

On Saturday, the unknown man ran up and grabbed her in an inappropriate manner before fleeing

(Dave Landine/Facebook)
VIDEO: Dashcam captures head-on crash between snowplow and truck on northern B.C. highway

Driver posted to social media that he walked away largely unscathed

Black Press Media and BraveFace have come together to support children facing life-threatening conditions. Net proceeds from these washable, reusable, three-layer masks go to Make-A-Wish Foundation BC & Yukon.
Put on a BraveFace: Help make children’s wishes come true

Black Press Media, BraveFace host mask fundraiser for Make-A-Wish Foundation

A B.C. Ambulance Service paramedic wearing a face mask to curb the spread of COVID-19 moves a stretcher outside an ambulance at Royal Columbia Hospital, in New Westminster, B.C., on Sunday, November 29, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Top doctor urges Canadians to limit gatherings as ‘deeply concerning’ outbreaks continue

Canada’s active cases currently stand at 63,835, compared to 53,907 a week prior

A Canadian Pacific freight train travels around Morant’s Curve near Lake Louise, Alta., on Monday, Dec. 1, 2014. A study looking at 646 wildlife deaths along the railway tracks in Banff and Yoho national parks in Alberta and British Columbia has found that train speed is one of the biggest factors. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
Study finds train speed a top factor in wildlife deaths in Banff, Yoho national parks

Research concludes effective mitigation could address train speed and ability of wildlife to see trains

A airport worker is pictured at Vancouver International Airport in Richmond, B.C. Wednesday, March 18, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Canada extends COVID restrictions for non-U.S. travellers until Jan. 21 amid second wave

This ban is separate from the one restricting non-essential U.S. travel

Menno Place. (Google Street View image.)
B.C. care home looks to hire residents’ family members amid COVID-19-related staff shortage

Family would get paid as temporary workers, while having chance to see loved ones while wearing PPE

A confirmed case of COVID-19 at Vernon’s Silver Star Elementary School has been reported. (Google Maps)
COVID case confirmed at Okanagan elementary school

Member of Silver Star Elementary community in Vernon self-isolating at home; parents alerted Nov. 28

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Steve French caught the halo moon on his camera on Saturday night. (Steve French Facebook)
Did you see the halo moon last night?

The halo is actually millions of tiny ice crystals

Most Read