Coronavirus: Anti-bacterial firm moves to make hand sanitiser

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Micro-Fresh hand sanitiser
Image caption,
Micro-Fresh has now formulated a hand sanitiser with 66% alcohol for retailers after "inundated requests"

A firm producing an anti-bacterial chemical has switched to make hand sanitiser due to demand during the coronavirus outbreak.

Micro-Fresh normally manufactures a liquid, which is added to products such as shoes and bedding to prevent odour and pathogenic bacteria.

The company has now formulated a hand sanitiser with 66% alcohol for retailers after "inundated requests".

The Leicester firm has 12 employees and hopes to employ a further 20.

Jigna Varu, from Micro-Fresh, said it first produced a sample of 2,000 litres (440 gallons) of the gel last Friday and now another 10,000 (2,200 gallons) to order.

"Coronavirus has made people more aware now about bacteria and viruses on surfaces and around us," the 29-year-old said.

"This pandemic feels like a dream, but people don't need to panic buy.

"There's a lot of community spirit in Leicester - customers have offered to help us produce the sanitiser to manage the demand."

Image caption,
The anti-bacterial product, and now the hand sanitiser and aerosol spray, are produced in Leicester

Ms Varu added the hand sanitiser calls came after a demand for a high alcohol content aerosol spray for businesses, including schools, spas, gyms and restaurants to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

"Once it is sprayed in the room, through a fog machine, you get an anti-microbial coating on any surfaces - desks, telephones, all areas where you get high volumes of bacteria," she said.

Micro-Fresh, which launched in 2006, has distribution offices in eight countries around the world including the US, India, China and Singapore.

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