Tennessee homeowner says fungus from Jack Daniel’s barrel house is killing trees and shrubs

Lincoln County, Tennessee (WHNT/NEXSTAR) – Many of our Lincoln County, Tennessee neighbors are sick of the “whiskey fungus” covering their property and blame the nearby Jack Daniel’s storage facility.

They say the black mold is fed by ethanol vapors emanating from a barrel house owned by the Brown-Forman Corporation where Jack Daniels whiskey is aged and stored.

“Black mushrooms cover entire shrubs and completely strangle bushes,” said Patrick Long, whose home in Mulberry, Tennessee is right next to Jack Daniel’s Barrel House.

“When the ethanol, which has alcohol inside the barrel house, evaporates, it creates a black fungus that sticks to anything that doesn’t move,” Long says. told Nexter’s WHNT last yearhe added, having spent thousands of dollars trying to remove the fungus from his property.

Long, along with his wife Christy Long, filed a lawsuit Earlier this year, Lincoln County officials approved Brown-Forman’s plans to build additional barrel houses in the area, despite Brown-Forman’s lack of proper permits. claimed.

“Eventually, we will have 20 barrel houses within an 800-meter radius of Lincoln County,” Long claimed. “They didn’t go through the construction and planning cycle, they didn’t submit a site plan, they didn’t provide a construction plan.”

Just this week, a Lincoln County judge ordered the construction of a new barrel house Stop.

Halting construction, however, only addresses one of the neighborhood’s concerns.At a meeting with county commissioners and representatives of Brown Foreman in December, Homeowners complained that mold from six existing barrel houses was constantly covering their home and yard.

“When we moved here 30 years ago, we cleaned the house once a year,” resident Gary Willer said at a conference. “Now he cleans the house four or five times a year. I washed it two months ago, but I need it again. I can’t live like this anymore.”

An attorney for the Longs told a judge this week that they will be asking a judge to block Brown-Foreman from using some of the existing barrel houses pending litigation.

Meanwhile, Brown-Forman has previously claimed that ethanol vapors emitted from barrel houses are within legal limits. Executives also claimed that the vapors did not pose any physical harm.

Melvin Keebler, vice president of the company, said:

It is well documented that certain alcohol-eating fungi are known to grow near distilleries and produce unpleasant odors and soot-like substances on homes, cars and other nearby structures. Residents who live near whiskey distilleries around Louisville, Kentucky, complain of the same problem. air pollution control district found that the fungus primarily caused only cosmetic damage.

A representative for Brown-Forman said in an emailed statement shared with Nextor that fungi “is a naturally occurring microbiome for as long as the whiskey itself exists.”

“It’s found throughout the environment, including near distilleries and areas completely unrelated to the production of aged whiskey. This slow-growing microbiome has a variety of food sources, including alcohol vapors,” says representatives. wrote, “Some people may not like the way it looks, but based on the information available, we believe it will not harm individuals. We are committed to protecting the safety and health of our residents.”

Company representatives made no specific reference to Longs’ lawsuit or subsequent order by a judge to halt construction of the new barrel house. However, Brown-Forman confirmed the decision in a statement to the government. Lexington Herald Reader Wednesday newspaper.

A company spokesperson said, “We respect the Prime Minister’s decision and look forward to working with Lincoln County on the renewed permit.” We will continue to comply with construction, permitting regulations and industry standards.”

Brown-Forman executives had previously opposed building some sort of filtration system to reduce the amount of ethanol released from the barrel house, despite previous pleas from Long. Donna Willis, Jack Daniel’s corporate executive, claimed that such a filtration system spoiled the taste of the product. new york times report.

In the meantime, the Longs, like other residents in the neighborhood, may continue to have “whiskey fungus” on their homes, plants and trees. They also cross their fingers that Brown-Forman is not allowed to proceed with plans to rezoning nearby areas to build more barrel houses.

“They’re going to start turning the rest of Lincoln County into the same black mold that we’re dealing with right now,” Long said. Tennessee homeowner says fungus from Jack Daniel’s barrel house is killing trees and shrubs

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