Inspired by a love for the land and the bounty it produces, the story of Norm’s Farms began with Norman Lenhardt, a passionate conservationist who sought to protect and preserve America’s farm lands in order to feed the world. When he wasn’t busy advocating for preservation and wildlife protection, Norm spent time tending to his 170 acre farm in Hartsburg, MO.
These days, Norm’s farm is managed by his son Roger Lenhardt, who in 2013 joined Ann and Erin Lenhardt to found Norm’s Farms in Pittsboro, NC, as way to feature and celebrate the elderberries grown back in Hartsburg. They selected elderberries as their choice crop because of the plant’s hearty, naturally disease-resistant properties which make it easier to grow using sustainable methods. Elderberries also boast an exceptional nutrition profile that includes loads of Vitamins A, B and C, iron, potassium, and powerful antioxidants known as anthocyanins. The latter is a compound found in purple fruits and vegetables that has been linked to increased longevity, cardiovascular health, and the prevention of cancer and dementia (read more here).
Elderberries also have a long history in folk medicine and have been used to treat colds, flu, fever, burns, cuts, and more. While the plant’s apparent healing powers are still being studied and verified by science, it is commonly thought that the high concentration of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants give the plant anti-inflammatory and immune-boosting properties.
In addition to the nutritional density, elder plants and their berries also happen to be delicious. Thank goodness! The folks at Norm’s Farms have harnessed the robust plant’s flowers into syrups perfect for homemade sodas and cocktails, and the berries into supplements and jams. We are excited to feature their classic Elderberry Jam as our June 2018 Featured Jam. This thick, lush concoction of elderberries, water, sugar, lemons, and fruit pectin is delightfully sweet and subtly tart, offering the perfect balance to the deep roasty flavor of our nut butters. This special jam is available on our web shop while supplies last a la carte and in recommended AB&J and PB&J pairings.