Buying a Pig From The Wallow

Last year Joshua and I raised extra pigs to sell to our friends. It completely delights me to be able to help more people get meat from animals who are raised in non-industrial conditions. And it makes me happy that I get to have more pigs! I’ve just started talking with people about this years pigs, and I thought the information I’ve compiled for my friends might be interesting to someone else out there, too.

Buying a Pig From The Wallow

You are paying for Joshua and me to buy and raise a pig for you and deliver the pig to the processor once it reaches market weight. We are NOT legally able to sell you meat, which means you are required to pick up and pay for the meat at the processor’s yourself. There’s a lot of information here, so be sure to ask any questions you have!

Price:

  • The goal cost for you is around $500, but this price will vary depending on the exact weight of your pig at slaughter time.
  • You will owe $1.75 per pound hanging weight to me, payable in two parts: a $200 deposit due by March 1st and the balance to me due when you come to pick up your meat.
  • You will owe a $30 slaughter fee and $0.40 per pound hanging weight to the processor on the day you pick up your meat. I am not in charge of processor fees, and they are subject to change. I will let you know as soon as I know if they change.
  • If you are splitting your pig with someone else, one person should be chosen to be the person who pays me and the processor. You can work out collecting the money between yourselves, and then one person does the paying for each whole pig.

Pig Details:

  • I aim for a live weight of around 300 pounds per pig. This results in approximately 216 pounds hanging weight and 144 pounds of stuff for your freezer. This post gives more information about these terms.
  • The pigs live at The Wallow until the day they go to the processor. You are welcome to visit at any time and are encouraged to ask any and all questions you have about their care.
  • The pigs’ diet is primarily commercial feed, supplemented by hay, pasture forage, cull chickens, and kitchen scraps.
  • We do not do any preventative medication (no antibiotics in the feed, for example), and we take steps to prevent medical needs, but I do treat medical issues as they arise.
  • Your pig is NOT raised vegetarian and is NOT raised organic. Your pig IS raised to be happy.
  • If you have ANY questions about the care of the pigs, please ask. I don’t know what you might want to know, but I’m happy to tell you anything.

Pick Up Logistics:

  • I buy piglets in March. They will be ready for slaughter sometime between July and October.
  • I will coordinate the slaughter date with you so that pick up works with your schedule. I will be able to tell you a few weeks leading up the slaughter what the trajectory looks like based on the pigs’ weight.
  • You need 3-4 large coolers. The meat is already frozen when you pick it up, so you don’t need extra ice. You just pack it in coolers and then head home. This post talks about space needs so you can judge your cooler and freezer space needs.

Meat Details:

  • I am not responsible for any cutting errors made by the butcher.
  • This post talks about how much meat and what kinds of cuts you can expect from your pig.
  • For hams and bacon, you have the option of taking them home to wet cure on your own or having the processor send them to Benton’s (a local business) for curing and smoking. If you have Benton’s cure and smoke for you (smoking is optional), there is an extra cost of $1.50/lb for the ham/bacon, payable to Benton’s when you pick up the meat.
  • The bacon is ready about 6 weeks after being dropped off at Benton’s and the hams are ready after 4 months. After Benton’s cures/smokes the meat, it can go back to the processor and they can slice it up for you.
  • What Benton’s does is called salt-cure or country-cure. It may be very different from the ham and bacon flavor you’re used to and its preparation is different. You may want to Google around to learn about country-curing so you’re not surprised.

The Unexpected:

  • If your pig dies prior to processing, I will refund your $200.
  • Some things could result in your pig needing to be processed prior to the weight goal. A broken leg is an example. In this case, you will still be responsible for the hanging weight prices to me and the processor, but these amounts would be much smaller than estimated, and you would get less meat than expected.
  • If you are unable to pay the remaining balance on your pig, you do not get a refund of your deposit, nor do you get your pig or the meat. You are free to try to find someone else who wants to buy your pig or split it with you. It is up to you to work something out with the other party.
Let me know if you have any questions!
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