At the Orchard
Robert and Trisha Misiewicz became the proud owners of Big Red Orchard on December 21, 2022. Rob and Trish met during college at Oakland University (OU) and both went on to obtain their Doctorates in Physical Therapy from OU. After school, Trish went on to practice as an ICU/orthopedic physical therapist and Rob decided to choose a different path. While in school, Rob was running an insect farm that supplied various products to the exotic animal, fishing, and research communities. This is where his love of farming began.
With the support of his wife, he purchased 10 acres in Bruce Township, where he expanded his growing business into what is known today as Great Lakes Hornworm. Trish transitioned from hospital life into helping grow the family business as Rob and his team expanded Great Lakes Hornworm into the nation’s largest supplier of Tobacco Hornworms. These hornworms (amongst other species of insects), are used for exotic animal nutrition, recreational fishing, medical & agricultural research, and worm castings for plant nutrition. Fast forward to the end of 2022 when Big Red was up for sale. Neither wanted Big Red to be converted into another large development. The couple recognized the potential that has always resonated throughout the land and became determined to acquire the property.
The couple's goals are to restore and revitalize Big Red, complete construction projects that were left unfinished, and utilize regenerative farming practices to better suit the land. Along the way, they hope to honor the families that came before them: the Miller family, Mossman and Franco, and Cusick Lake Farm families, who each paved the way for many decades through their hard work and dedication to farming and giving back to the community. It is also important for Rob and Trish to have their children involved in the Orchard, as with the worm farm, to instill the values of hard work and discipline needed to achieve one’s goals and dreams.
Rob and Trisha look forward to making new memories and traditions for their family, the orchard, and all those new and existing families who have come to love Big Red. Pressing forward since 1878 and pressing on since 2023!
Rob & Trish Misiewicz
"I have worked at Big Red since April 2012. What I enjoy most about the farm is working outside. I enjoy watching the season from beginning to end, from bare trees during winter to the end of a very good harvest. My favorite season at the farm is fall when U-pick begins. I also enjoy pressing cider and the smell of the fresh donuts."
"I began working for Big Red in August 2013. When I work with the trees out in the orchard, I feel a special connection with them, as if they are thanking me for taking care of them. In return, they produce beautiful, delicious fruits. I have great satisfaction in seeing others enjoy the fruits as well. My favorite season is fall when the orchard is full of people and you can watch them enjoy the farm in the same way I do. This is My Job that I give full dedication and much love. "