ALBANY, N.Y. (WTEN) — In the early days of the pandemic, you may remember that hand sanitizer was flying off the shelves. To help solve the problem, New York State Clean hand sanitizer was produced by inmates and was distributed.
“The pandemic happened and you can’t fault the state trying to do something to keep people safe and healthy, but I think they over did it and now, you had over 700,000 I think gallons of this sanitizer sitting on a runway in my district,” stated Senator Joe Griffo.
That runway is located at the NYS Preparedness Training Center in Oriskany. Instead of just incinerating it, Senator Joe Griffo said he advocated for the state to look for other ways it could be used.
“The isopropyl properties of the alcohol could be used in the cosmetic industry and it appears now, Kodak has expressed an interest in this,” explained Griffo.
According to the state, Eastman Kodak will transport and recycle 168 trailer loads of materials, including hand sanitizer, tarps, shrink wrap, cardboard, plastic containers, and pallets, to the Eastman Business Park in Rochester.
The process began this month, and is expected to take 44 weeks to complete.
Kodak released a statement that said, “At the beginning of the pandemic, Kodak, along with many other companies, readily responded to the State’s need for isopropyl alcohol (IPA) that would aid in the production of hand sanitizer. Just as we mobilized to provide this essential ingredient when it was needed, we are now mobilizing our established capabilities to remove and recycle the excess material safely and responsibly.”
The hand sanitizer will be distilled to extract the IPA so it can be reused in manufacturing.
“At least now, we are seeing movement to remove this from where they are being stored on a facility outside,” said Griffo. “And then hopefully do it in the most affordable way, and safest way possible.”
Kodak will provide these services for a $2.32 million dollar agreement which will run until February 2024.