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July 15, 2020, 5:17 a.m. EDT

Queen Elizabeth II sells gin made from leaves found at Buckingham Palace after tourist revenues crash

Proceeds will go to trust, for care and conservation of royal art collection

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By Rupert Steiner

Getty Images
The garden of Buckingham Palace

Queen Elizabeth II is selling gin made from leaves found at the back of Buckingham Palace as cash from tourists visiting her residences has plunged.

Royal Collection Trust, a department of the Royal Household, launched a premium small-batch London dry gin for sale in its shops on Monday, infused with bay and mulberry leaves found in her back garden.

It comes days after it was reported revenues from tourists visiting her homes were wiped out by the coronavirus pandemic, causing an £18 million ($22 million) black hole in the finances. Up to 250 workers have been offered voluntary buyouts, according to The Sun newspaper .

Read: Queen Elizabeth II joins the rest of the world on a video call for her first public outing online.

Tourism has been hit hard globally, with hotels, airlines and travel agents devastated by billions of grounded travelers.

Travel & tourism generated $7.6 trillion (10.2% of global GDP) and 292 million jobs in 2016, equivalent to 1 in 10 jobs in the global economy.

Selling at £40 ($50) a bottle, the Buckingham Palace gin will help bolster the royal finances.

Read: Madonna invites Harry and Meghan to sublet her New York apartment because Canada is too ‘boring’ — and Canadians clap back

All profits from sales of the gin go to the Royal Collection Trust, which is a registered charity, and will help fund the care and conservation of the Royal Collection, the trust said in a statement .

The Royal Collection is among the largest and most important art collections in the world, and one of the last great European royal collections to remain intact.

It comprises almost all aspects of the fine and decorative arts, and is spread among some 15 royal residences and former residences across the U.K., most of which are regularly open to the public.

Read: Prince Charles tests positive for coronavirus

The Royal Collection is held in trust by the queen for her successors and the nation, and is not owned by her as a private individual.

Rupert Steiner is Barron's Group bureau chief for the Europe, Middle East and Africa region.

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