New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Monday that his state is ramping up production of its own hand sanitizer to deal with an outbreak of novel coronavirus, while warning companies like Purell and Amazon against gouging the price of the product.
“We’ll be providing this to governmental agencies, schools, the MTA, prisons, etc., because you can’t get it on the market, and when you get it it’s very, very expensive,” Cuomo said at a press conference.
Cuomo said that capacity is 100,000 gallons per week, and that the state will be increasing its production capacity.
He said the disinfectant will initially go to New Rochelle, which has seen an outbreak of coronavirus, known as COVID-19.
“To Purell and Mr. Amazon and Mr. eBay — if you continue the price gouging, we will introduce our product, which is superior to your product. And you don’t have the floral bouquet [scent], so stop price gouging,” Cuomo said.
Cuomo said that New York currently has 142 cases of Coronavirus, the most of any state in the U.S. The total number of confirmed cases in the U.S. surpassed 500 on Sunday.
The surge in cases has led to shortages of hand sanitizer and other products like paper towels, toilet paper and disinfectants across the country. Amazon is out of stock on many of the products, as are stores like Walmart and Target.
eBay, an online auction site, said earlier in March that it was banning the sale of respirators, face masks and hand sanitizers because of price-gouging.