Electrical fire destroys majority of Joe’s Organics’ farm in East Austin

Last night’s storms left thousands of Austinites without power this morning, but an electrical fire yesterday afternoon has nearly wiped out one local farm.

Dozens of local restaurants use the microgreens from Joe’s Organics on their dishes, but many farmers market shoppers buy from them, too. An electrical fire on Sunday nearly wiped out the farm, including greenhouses and its seed bank. Contributed by Joe’s Organics.

Joe’s Organics, which opened in 2012 as a composting facility and in 2015 expanded to include produce and microgreens, is a familiar name to area chefs and farmers’ market shoppers.

The remnants of a fire on Sunday at Joe’s Organics. Contributed by Joe’s Organics.

An electrical issue on Sunday at the farm, 7204 Shelton Road in East Austin, sparked a fire that destroyed the farm’s inventory, as well as its seed bank, shed, greenhouse, tools, watering and farmers’ market booth equipment. In a post on Instagram, owner Joe Diffie said it only took the Austin Fire Department five minutes to show up, and firefighters were able to prevent any further damage or injuries. He estimated the loss at $40,000.

UPDATE: The farm now has a GoFundMe fundraising page set up to recoup some of the losses. You can contribute here.

Seeds and seedlings were destroyed in Sunday’s fire at Joe’s Organics in East Austin. Contributed by Joe’s Organics.

“We down but not out. Still have our shipping container to grow in and the drive to rebuild,” he wrote online. “Probably gonna do a crowdfunding thing this week to help get the farm over this hurdle, so plz don’t forget your friendly neighborhood food recycler in the coming days.”

Joe’s Organics estimated the loss at $40,000. Contributed by Joe’s Organics.

 

 


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