English Newsom Cellars donates 1,000 gallons of wine to be distilled to hand sanitizer

Updated: Mar. 23, 2020 at 6:56 PM CDT
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LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - As disinfecting supplies are in short supply, Lubbock’s English Newsom Cellars at Caprock Winery is stepping up to donate 1,000 gallons of wine to be distilled into hand sanitizer.

The product will be transported to Hye Rum in Hye, Texas, where the sanitizer will be produced and packaged for first responders and medical facilities.

Roman Marcus, the production manager at English Newsom Cellars presented the idea to the winery.

“It’s a pretty expensive venture to donate that amount,” Steve Newsom said. “We didn’t blink. We thought it was a fantastic idea.”

Newsom tells KCBD the winery is struggling along with other businesses in the nation. However, the winery was in a practical place to donate with the 2019 crop producing enough commodity.

“These are tough times,” Newsom said. “We don’t play this down what we are going through. But, the fact that we know that this wine when it’s distilled will first go to first responders, health care workers, doctors, nurses, hospitals, it just makes our losses financially seem negligible. They’re truly irrelevant in this situation.”

The 1,000 gallons is expected to produce 100 gallons of sanitizer. Because of the alcohol percentage of the wine, it’s expected to provide a better base for the sanitizer.

“You have something you are working with that’s 15 to 17 percent,” David Mueller said. “You are starting with something that has a higher base so it’s a little bit less work for the distillation process to actually get it going. It’s a faster turnaround process so we can get the hand sanitizer out to first responders and everybody.”

Newsom said his business plans to whether the storm with its employees. They are grateful to have been in the position to give back in this time of crisis.

“As easy of a decision it was to help out, there’s so much more we can do and more we will try to do,” Newsom said. “We are part of the Lubbock community. During a time like this, there’s nowhere else I’d rather be than Lubbock.”

English Newsom Cellars is providing home delivery and curbside pickup for its products during this time. Also, healthcare workers and those who lost their job due to the COVID-19 outbreak can receive a discount.

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