Hand Sanitiser

Introduction

As a brewer and a private label ready-to-drink manufacturer we were perfectly positioned to quickly start making sanitiser when Covid19 struck. Our order book dried up overnight and we were driven to keep our business running, keep our people employed and help with the crisis.  We decided early to make a high-grade sanitiser that actually did what it was supposed to do. We wanted to make a product effective enough to be used in a medical and healthcare setting. We also wanted to make sure we were helping the most vulnerable people in our community during this terrible time.


Selling this type of gear normally requires a certification process by the Therapeutic Goods people and we began this but the timeline was not going to cut the mustard. We sent letters to our local member and due to a groundswell of requests an exemption was quickly granted provided it followed some fairly strict guidelines that includes strict labelling, transport restrictions and of course a very particular formula. Incidentally, we don’t see everyone out there following all the rules but we want all our customers to know that we are sticklers and will never water down our product. 


But onto the formula. We make Surf Coast Sanitiser to the World Health Organisation’s specification to create a product suitable for use in super-critical medical and health services as well as for us regular people. 


There is a bit of maths involved but nothing as serious as Covid19 and protecting our healthcare people. 

The Ingredients

There are only four so this should be easy (but with everyone in the world wanting the gear, it’s a world of pain. Trust us on this). 

Ethanol (denatured) 94% TBA

This is a very high grade of ethanol equivalent to a food grade but has the denaturing agent Butanol added to it to make it unpleasant to drink. Butanol still sits in the family of alcohols, so it adds to the potency of the final product. This is a product specifically designed to meet the current hand sanitiser demand.  The breakdown of the product direct from the manufacture is as follows:

  • Ethanol 94%
  • Butanol 1%
  • Water 5 %

Hydrogen Peroxide 3%

We buy our H2O2 at a high concentration 51%, however the WHO formula suggest you to use just 3% concentration so we water it down 1 part H2O2 to 17 parts water - thus arriving at 3% H2O2. 

Glycerol 98%

This is the moisturising element of the product, making the final product a bit more forgiving to your skin. Always nice.

Reverse Osmosis Water

We produce RO water on site, it is just a highly filtered water supply with no impurities and no chemicals, the RO filtering removes all particles as well as chemicals like Fluoride and Chlorine.  This is a normal product in our brewery used for making lots of different drinks. Also nice.

The formula

OK, so now we get to the maths...  So again we will break it down ingredient by ingredient..  The WHO's recommended formula is this:

Ethanol 80% v/v
Hydrogen Peroxide 0.125% v/v
Glycerol 1.45% v/v

The fine print bit: "THE ACCEPTED LIMITS SHOULD BE FIXED TO +/- 5% OF THE TARGET CONCENTRATION (75% - 85%) FOR ETHANOL" 

Our Recipe

Ethanol / Alcohol

84.5% x 95% proof Ethanol/Butanol/alcohol
= 0.80275
= 80.3% Alcohol (denatured)

Smack bang in the middle of the accepted range of 80%, (75% to 85% as per the fine print). Allowing for the  +/- 5 % - we figured you should feel secure that it works.

Hydrogen Peroxide

4.17% x 3% proof H2O2
= 0.001251
= 0.1251% Hydrogen Peroxide

Hence... our final product has 0.1251% Hydrogen Peroxide, as per the label

Glycerol

1.48% x 98% proof Glycerol
= 0.014504
= 1.45%

 

Our final product has 1.45% Glycerol, the exact recommended volume as per the WHO recommended formula

RO Water

Which in this formula is 9.85%. This simply makes up the remaining volume

References

World Health Organisation (WHO) recommend formula

WHO poster on how to use hand rub 

Federal government legislation on hand sanitiser Therapeutic Goods (Excluded Goods—Hand Sanitisers) Determination 2020