Mild to Wild Pepper & Herb Company® started off rather modestly, as an idea by two Indianapolis firefighters. Jim Campbell had been selling dried chile peppers that he’d grown in his backyard to fellow firefighters for several years as a hobby. Each successive year he was planting more and more to keep up with demand.
While on vacation in Santa Fe, NM with another firefighter- Kyle Leslie, the pair stopped by a flea market and picked up several different kinds of fresh chile powders. Trying them out with a steak dinner later that evening, the idea for a formal business venture was formed.
That same year, with borrowed land and help from Adrian Orchards in Indianapolis, a handful of Orange Habanero seeds were sown. At the same time they ordered a sampler set of hot sauces and started making phone calls to the numbers on the labels trying to find anyone who was interested.
One of those first contacts was a restauranteur named Blair Lazar (of Death Sauce™ fame) who was also just starting out in the industry and gave the business partners the technical specifications for how he needed the chiles processed.. The makers of Pure Hell Hot Sauce™ also provided invaluable help and were one of our first customers.