L-R Dillon Risk, Devin Risk, DJ Risk, and Kelsi Risk-Reyes
Spencer, Indiana’s Diamond K Sweets, a local candy manufacturer, is still producing its signature “Fudge O Bits”. It has also moved its production to create hand sanitizer to supply its local community.
Across the country, distilleries and other manufacturing companies are moving production to meet the demand for hand sanitizer amid the coronavirus pandemic. While handwashing remains the gold standard for destroying the virus particles that cause COVID-19, it isn’t always an option. For healthcare workers, emergency responders, postal and grocery workers, hand sanitizer is a necessary alternative.
Kristi and Kelsi Risk, mother and daughter owners of Diamond K Sweets, explained: “Once we realized our county had this need and that we had the facility, equipment, and ability to create the hand sanitizer, we knew we wanted to help.”
Making the sanitizer takes roughly two days and several steps. Everything in the facility has to be completely sterilized; then, there is the purchasing and locating of the correct ingredients. Diamond K Sweets is making its own distilled water to use in the recipe, which produces a final product that is about 84% alcohol. The hand sanitizer has natural plant-based emollients to keep hands from drying out and cracking from frequent use of the product.
“Making the hand sanitizer is way more than just mixing raw ingredients. It has brought back flashbacks of my high school chemistry days as this process must have the right bonding agents and just the right recipe.” states Kristi Risk. “It is a privilege to be able to contribute and serve. We are so thankful for our community and how everyone is in this together.”
Diamond K Sweets is currently producing hand sanitizer for Owen County’s first responders and emergency workers and hopes to offer it to the general public as production allows.