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New Orleans Rallies to Help Hubig's Pies Return

It’s been a week since fire destroyed the historic Hubig’s pie factory in the Marigny. Owners are getting help from city officials and other businesses on rebuilding plans.

Just hours after the fire-alarm blaze was extinguished, owner Drew Ramsey promised that the company would rebuild, and at the same location. Over the past week he’s been learning how difficult that will be.

“For example, the little wrap that we use was very kind of high-tech scientific. It was semi-permeable. And it’s exactly what we needed to wrap a glazed fruit pastry in south Louisiana and still get the icing to crystalize in 100-degree temperature, 100% humidity," said Ramsey. "We got that stuff from Germany. And I’d just taken a huge load of that, and that’s ordered way in advance.”

Ramsey was standing in the crowded Fleurty Girl store on Magazine Street, where fans of his company were buying T-shirts sporting the Hubig's logo and various pie flavors, with profits going to Hubig's employees.  Rouse’s Market stores are offering temporary jobs to the 35 displaced workers. Suggestions are also flooding in for temporary factory space, but Ramsey says the machines he needs must be custom-made and will take months to produce. And it’s a complicated process to rebuild a factory in a historic residential neighborhood. 

“The outpouring of support has been remarkable. And it’s very touching. It’s very, it’s emotional. People have really shown how much they care.”  

Ramsey is meeting today with the mayor’s office for help with the rebuilding effort.

Eileen is a news reporter and producer for WWNO. She researches, reports and produces the local daily news items. Eileen relocated to New Orleans in 2008 after working as a writer and producer with the Associated Press in Washington, D.C. for seven years.