Ineos launches new healthcare business making sanitisers and hand gels

Chemicals giant Ineos is launching a new global healthcare business after successfully producing millions of bottles of hand sanitisers for the NHS at the height of the virus crisis.

Ineos Hygienics will produce a range of hospital grade hand gels, sanitiser sprays for hands and surfaces and sanitiser wipes, for sale to the public.

It will be headquartered in the UK and operate manufacturing plants at Newton Aycliffe, near Middlesbrough, Herne in Germany, Etain in France and at Jacksonville and Neville Island in the US.

George Ratcliffe, son of Ineos boss Sir Jim Ratcliffe, will be chief operating officer, after overseeing production of hand sanitisers in recent months.

He told the PA news agency there was clearly a shortage of the product across the world, and he believes demand will continue.

“People will treat hygiene differently from now on, whether it’s in schools, offices or in the home.

“The market is definitely growing. It was a global pandemic, and there was a global shortage.

“We’ve delivered more than four million bottles of sanitiser to hospitals around the world, bringing confidence to thousands of frontline medical staff and care providers. Now, we’re able to offer that same level of protection to the public.”

Around 40 new jobs have been created in the UK by the new business, but Mr Ratcliffe said he hopes that number will increase in the coming months.

Ineos is Europe’s largest producer of ultra-high purity ethanol and isopropyl alcohol (IPA), which are the two main ingredients used in sanitiser products.

Supplies to pharmacies, wholesalers and supermarkets is now starting across the UK and Germany, with France and the US following shortly.

Mr Ratcliffe added: “Covid-19 has made everyone more aware of the importance of hygiene and the need for effective sanitising products.

“As a new and quickly evolving hygiene business, we will be able to meet the demands of both consumers and businesses as we all adapt to the new demands for hygiene against corona and other viruses.”

Ineos installed new plants in the UK, Germany, France and the US in a few months and is now producing five million bottles of hand sanitiser every month.

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