Welcome to the Straightbourbon.com Forums.
Results 1 to 10 of 10
  1. #1
    Connoisseur
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Saline, MI
    Posts
    755

    Distilleries and fungus

    Interesting account in the NY Times about local problem and resultant legal action in the vicinity of the KY distilleries:
    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/08/30/us...ted=1&_r=1&hpw
    Craig

  2. #2
    Virtuoso
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Location
    Sutton, Massachusetts
    Posts
    1,311

    Re: Distilleries and fungus

    As a homeowner I can sympathize, however, before they knew what this stuff was and where it came from, it was accepted as part of their natural environment, correct? Wouldn't this black mold have been fairly ubiquitous and obvious on surrounding homes/buildings before they purchased?

    I doubt ethanol capture is going to work unless it can be close to perfect. Getting it below 1ppm is not going to be cheap or easy. You'd need all new rickhouses that are practically hermetically sealed, and new building environmental controls since you could no longer open the windows. Comparing to the wine industry for ethanol capture is likely not a fair comparison. The concentration is much less and generally speaking, is produced in semi-arrid/arrid climates. Even so, you'll see this black mold on the walls of wine cellars/caves where wine is aging in barrel -

    Tough problem to solve.
    Mark

  3. #3
    Moderator
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    SW Iowa
    Posts
    3,052

    Re: Distilleries and fungus

    There is another thead on this if you look.
    Normal is an illusion. What is normal to the spider, is chaos for the fly.

  4. #4
    Bourbonian of the Year 2002 and Guru
    Join Date
    Sep 1999
    Location
    Chicago
    Posts
    12,656

    Re: Distilleries and fungus

    This fungus has been known for a long time. It's a little like moving into my neighborhood and then complaining about the crowds and traffic caused by Wrigley Field. These recent cases appear to be nothing more than a bid by a lawyer to make a little money for himself and maybe even for the plaintiffs. The stuff is harmless and natural. It washes off with soap and water and a little elbow grease. The companies being sued have to be careful about what they say so this story is being reported mostly from the point-of-view of the plaintiffs which makes for a good story. I can't say nothing will come of it, because stupider things have happened, but I will say that nothing should come of it.

    Only one thing has changed in recent years and that is production volume. Kentucky's distilleries are making and, therefore, aging more whiskey than they have in more than 40 years. That probably means there is more fungus where it was before and it's probably reaching further than it did before, so more people are affected. Any reasonable weighing of the economic good of a robust whiskey business against the ostensible harm of the fungus has to come out on the industry's side, but that word 'reasonable' is the caveat.

  5. #5
    Connoisseur
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Honolulu, HI
    Posts
    803

    Re: Distilleries and fungus

    That increase in production/storage looks like a rational basis for the lawsuit, if it has increased the qualitative or quantitative nature of the fungus (range or concentration of infestation). I think there may be some reasonable action toward amelioration and/or accommodation.

  6. #6
    Advanced Taster
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Loveland CO
    Posts
    175

    Re: Distilleries and fungus

    Quote Originally Posted by MauiSon View Post
    That increase in production/storage looks like a rational basis for the lawsuit, if it has increased the qualitative or quantitative nature of the fungus (range or concentration of infestation). I think there may be some reasonable action toward amelioration and/or accommodation.
    So because it affects more people now makes suing more rational?
    Mark
    "...that we here highly resolve that these empty bottles shall not have been drunk in vain..."

  7. #7
    Bourbonian of the Year 2002 and Guru
    Join Date
    Sep 1999
    Location
    Chicago
    Posts
    12,656

    Re: Distilleries and fungus

    The bottom line is that it is, at worst, a minor nuisance, so I don't see how it matters how many people are affected. It's nothing!

    "Amelioration" and "accommodation" are nice words, but there is no known way to "ameliorate" the matter, and the only reasonable "accommodation" is one that has been practiced for years. The distillery sends a crew with soap, water, and brushes every few months to clean your house. The stuff is natural and harmless. "Harmless" means "no harm." No harm, no foul. No foul, no lawsuit.

    The Huffington Post wrongly said it is 'everywhere' in Louisville. Absurd. At most, it affects a few dozen families, every single one of whom bought their homes knowing the distillery was a neighbor. I'm not saying their ignorance is faked. Ignorance is one thing we have in abundance. That still doesn't mean they've been harmed so as to create a legitimate cause of action.
    Last edited by cowdery; 09-01-2012 at 17:46.

  8. #8
    Connoisseur
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Location
    Western NY
    Posts
    843

    Re: Distilleries and fungus

    Quote Originally Posted by cowdery View Post
    I'm not saying their ignorance is faked. Ignorance is one thing we have in abundance.
    "The two most common elements in the universe are Hydrogen and stupidity."

    Harlan Ellison
    John Q.
    Tennessee Squire
    Quote Originally Posted by ggilbertva
    It won't be any cheaper than it is today.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ryan
    Someone will pay it. Someone always pays it.

  9. #9
    Connoisseur
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Honolulu, HI
    Posts
    803

    Re: Distilleries and fungus

    Quote Originally Posted by mark fleetwood View Post
    So because it affects more people now makes suing more rational?
    You're assuming it does affect more people - I don't know if that is a fact and haven't commented on that issue.
    Last edited by MauiSon; 09-01-2012 at 23:39.

  10. #10
    Connoisseur
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Mesquite, TX
    Posts
    619

    Re: Distilleries and fungus

    You cannot sue unless you can prove damage. You can also only sue for the amount of damages sustained. The job of the lawyer and plaintiff will be to prove that the fungus is harmful to humans and can say that they have been damaged at "X" monetary amount. Their best argument would be to prove that it causes damage to the house and that they can sue for the amount it takes to repair those damages.

    All this is academic. Lawyers only see dollars to be made, they don't care who they hurt to make it.

    I think what Chuck said is likely what will happen. They will settle out of court for a small amount and promise to clean houses. This is because cases such as this have already been tried. All the defense has to do is bring those actions to light.
    |-o-| [-o-] |-o-| "I'm on the leader"

 

 

Similar Threads

  1. Kentucky Residents Sue Distilleries Over Whiskey Fungus
    By MacinJosh in forum General Bourbon Discussion
    Replies: 15
    Last Post: 06-04-2012, 13:54
  2. Bourbon Fungus
    By mosugoji64 in forum General Bourbon Discussion
    Replies: 20
    Last Post: 07-10-2011, 12:43
  3. 12 Distilleries
    By Attila in forum General Bourbon Discussion
    Replies: 20
    Last Post: 10-15-2008, 18:40

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Back to top