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Owner: Norman Mullet
Location: Bremen, IN
Meet the Farmer: Norman Mullet
In 1983 Norman Mullet began his quest to grow fresh, chemical-free foods that offered the most nutritional benefit to our bodies. On his farm in Bremen, Indiana, Norman and his family produce a variety of vegetables and herbs, along with eggs, and small quantities of berries and fruit.
Norman’s commitment to growing healthful, chemical-free foods stems from his mother’s battle with cancer, a battle she lost when only 55 years of age. While caring for her, Norman listened to doctors say things like, “don’t eat pork,” fearing its negative health effects. But that didn’t make sense to Norman, who says he realized, “it’s not the animal” [that made the meat unhealthy], “it’s what the animal was eating.” It was a life-changing insight, propelling him into the world of chemical-free farming.
When asked about his growing methods, Norman explains, “It’s the soil…the soil is alive.” He says feeding the soil feeds his crops, affecting their ability to thrive and, ultimately, the flavor of the vegetables and fruits. Using natural, nutrient-rich products to enrich the soil, he has carefully nurtured his land for years, meticulously tracking the results in each crop and even using a commercial lab to analyze the soil and how it has changed over time. While managing pests sometimes means painstakingly removing them by hand, Norman carefully observes their lifecycles, timing his crops to avoid those periods when pests are likely to cause damage.
Norman also realized he wanted to work with and around his four daughters and his wife. “I am responsible for my children,” he says, and feels that working with his family gives him the opportunity to be a there for them every day, and to pass on what he has learned. “I want to continue to do this as long as I can,” Norman says, but he hopes that his children will want to carry on the family business. This is Norman Mullet’s first season with the BRFM.