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ExxonMobil Reworks Louisiana Plant to Produce Sanitizer

April 24, 2020

4 Min Read
ExxonMobil Reworks Louisiana Plant to Produce Sanitizer
ExxonMobil is producing sanitizer at its Baton Rouge, LA plant. Image courtesy of ExxonMobil

American energy and chemicals firm ExxonMobil is adding production capabilities for medical grade sanitizer at its Baton Rouge, LA plant to support healthcare workers and first responders during the COVID-19 pandemic, the company announced in a release Friday.

The company said it is currently converting existing equipment in the facility to manufacture, blend, package, and distribute the sanitizer products. 

“The ingenuity and dedication of our employees to develop a consumer-ready product in record time demonstrates ExxonMobil’s commitment to help those in need during the global pandemic,” ExxonMobil Corporation Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Darren Woods said in a statement. “We’re focused on keeping our people and communities safe while supporting frontline responders and meeting customer needs.”

To support the production of sanitizers, ExxonMobil boosted its monthly output of isopropyl alcohol (IPA) by about 3000 tn at its Baton Rouge site. The company also acquired ingredients and retooled machinery at its Baton Rouge facility and a lubricants plant in Port Allen, LA.

“To stand up an entirely new process and supply chain in a matter of weeks, while maintaining ExxonMobil’s high standards for safety and quality and in compliance with FDA requirements is truly remarkable,” said ExxonMobil Chemical Company President Karen McKee in the release. 

An initial run of 160,000 gal of sanitizer will be donated to medical personnel and first responders in Louisiana, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Pennsylvania, and Texas. 

Earlier this month, Powder & Bulk Solids reported that ExxonMobil started an effort to increase its capacity for certain raw ingredients used to produce personal protective equipment (PPE) and hand sanitizer. Production of polypropylene, used in medical masks and gowns, is slated to rise by 1,000 tn/mo, which is enough material to manufacture 200 million masks or 20 million gowns. The firm’s capacity for isopropyl alcohol, which is a key ingredient in hand sanitizer products and disinfectants, will grow by 3,000 tn/mo.

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