Chemicals company Ineos said today it will build a hand sanitiser plant in France in 10 days to help meet a European shortage.
Ineos has already begun production on hand sanitiser plants in the UK and Germany.
Last week the privately owned UK business said it would build UK and German plants to supply schools, hospitals, workplaces, supermarkets and hospitals with each factory producing 1m sanitisers a month.
Ineos said that the free issue of hand sanitisers to the National Health Service began on Tuesday.
“It is becoming more and more evident that contact between the hands and the mouth is an important cause of contagion of Coronavirus,” said Jim Ratcliffe, founder and chairman of Ineos.
Ineos produces the two raw materials needed for sanitisers, isopropyl alcohol and ethanol.
There are still widespread restrictions on hand sanitiser sales in UK supermarkets after demand soared leading to shortages.
Lidl said today that customers were restricted to buying two bottles of hand sanitiser each.
Other companies have moved to help fill coronavirus shortages, including brewery Brewdog and French luxury goods maker LVMH which have both switched production to hand sanitiser.
Companies such as BAE Systems, Airbus, Thales, Ford, Renishaw, and Rolls-Royce are working to build ventilators in the UK to fill an anticipated shortage.