Residents in Lincoln County, Tennessee, are furious with alcohol producer Jack Daniels after the whisky giant failed to control a black “whisky fungus” that has gotten out of control and has spread across their small Tennessee town. Apparently, the dangerous fungus is fueled by the ethanol vapors that leak out of the Jack Daniels’ factory barrel houses, and the fungus has been causing problems in Lincoln County for years on end.
Locals who are misfortunate enough to live near the Jack Daniels factory claim that the black whisky fungus covers their homes, porches, and cars. There are even people who have gone so far as to claim that the black whisky fungus that emerged from the Jack Daniels factory has killed off wildlife and has covered up street signs making it challenging to navigate the area for those who are not familiar with it.
The black whisky fungus first became a problem in the community surrounding the Jack Daniels factory after the liquor company announced its plans to build six new barrel houses in 2018 with the intention of creating an additional fourteen more in time.
Now, furious locals who have been plagued by the black mold demand that the Jack Daniels plant take responsibility for the issue and fix the problem before it harms people or kills off too much wildlife.
Patrick Long lives near one of the barrel houses. He has filed a lawsuit against the county for failing to control the black mold. Meanwhile, property values have plummeted in the area, and people are concerned about the health of the community since everyone is breathing in mold that is most likely very dangerous to the human body.
“It’s in the air. And you really, probably don’t want to be breathing that in. But nobody has done a test to determine if it’s actually poisonous,” he said. “I’m extremely concerned. My wife has breathing problems. One of the neighbors got cancer.”
Local officials have given up trying to clean up the black whisky fungus. Instead of cleaning the street signs that have been affected by mold, local authorities are simply replacing street signs when they become illegible.
Long claims to have been forced to pay upwards of $10,000 over the years to power wash his house. He claims that the only thing that can remove the sticky black mold from the whisky barrel houses is a powerful cocktail mixture of water and Clorox bleach, which is able to remove the black residue from his property.
“If you have any decent nails on you and you rode it down the side of a tree or a property within a quarter of a mile to a half-mile of these barrel houses, your entire finger will be covered in black fungus,” Long said. “You can’t see the tree limbs anymore. Our house, we have to have it pressure-washed four times a year now.”
Long and his wife filed their lawsuit because they fear that Jack Daniels expanded their number of barrel houses “illegally.”
She told WHNT, “We are asking the judge to force the county to issue a stop work order to stop construction at Jack Daniels. Here we are as District 6 spending our own personal dollars to stop a big corporation holding Lincoln County accountable.”