Homegrown Start-up to Transform a Dairy Byproduct into Alcohol for Hand Sanitizer
ALMONTE – The Ontario government is investing $455,000 from the Ontario Together Fund in Dairy Distillery to retool its operations and increase its capacity to manufacture hand sanitizer to help in the response to the fight against COVID-19.
The announcement was made today by Vic Fedeli, Minister of Economic Development, Job Creation and Trade.
“As we continue on the path to economic recovery, projects like this will ensure that Ontario is ready with solutions when and where they are needed,” said Minister Fedeli. “Our government will continue to work with our world-class businesses. By working together, we will maintain our place as the economic engine and workshop of Canada, and ensure we emerge stronger than ever before.”
Through its “buy one to give one” program, Dairy Distillery donated over 30,000 bottles of hand sanitizer to local groups in need. With Ontario’s support, Dairy Distillery will scale up to more than triple production of food-grade ethanol made from milk sugar, which would otherwise go to waste. This milk byproduct and the company’s innovative dairy fermentation technology will be used in making hand sanitizer. The company will also expand its facility and buy equipment to scale up production.
“We’re honoured that the Ontario government has chosen to fund our hand sanitizer scale-up project,” said Omid McDonald, founder and CEO of Dairy Distillery. “This funding will allow us to make 220,000 litres a year of sustainable alcohol for hand sanitizer. It will save two million litres of sugar from being wasted each year, helping the environment and Ontario dairy farmers. We’re aiming to have the additional capacity online by year-end.”
Dairy Distillery is an Almonte-based start-up that produces spirits, including vodka and cream liquors, made from milk byproduct.