High Desert Cowboy- How far is it up north?

High Desert Cowboy

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More cold and rain. My corrals were so close to being dry, just a little puddle was left. And now we’re back to a lake.
My buddy sent me this picture yesterday. When we were raising our pigs last summer he decided he wanted to try a mangalitsa pig to see how it would turn out, as he’d heard mangalitsa was the Kobe beef of pork. She took longer to finish, but I gotta say the marbling through that meat is impressive!
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SageHill

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More cold and rain. My corrals were so close to being dry, just a little puddle was left. And now we’re back to a lake.
My buddy sent me this picture yesterday. When we were raising our pigs last summer he decided he wanted to try a mangalitsa pig to see how it would turn out, as he’d heard mangalitsa was the Kobe beef of pork. She took longer to finish, but I gotta say the marbling through that meat is impressive!View attachment 106154
I'd heard they are the best. I had winery/restruant owner say if I raised them he'd buy. Of course that was before TSHTF and I know nothing about pigs or raising pigs. Didn't happen, at least not yet.
 

Ridgetop

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but I gotta say the marbling through that meat is impressive!
Pork hardly ever marbles and commercial hogs not at all. USDA changed the fat requirements years ago on market animals and pigs were bred so lean that they were practically uneatable. They have changed the requirements again, but commercial pork is still not as good as homegrown and some of the breeds are better than others.
 

High Desert Cowboy

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I would be curious to see what a cross between a mangalitsa and a duroc would produce. Mangalitsa clearly have better marbling, but the slower growth and small litter sizes doesn’t make it the most attractive option to me. You’d need to charge a premium to justify the cost of raising them, but like @SageHill stated, there are people out there who would do so.

I honestly really miss operating a sow farm. If and when we get more property a small pig operation is at the top of my list. Maybe 6 or 7 sows and a good boar to start and see where we go from there.
@farmerjan I actually have Berkshire sausage in the freezer from an older sow we bought. And it is delicious.
We had a lot of fun experimenting this last year with pigs. My friend has a hog pen and decided he wanted pigs and offered to let me keep a few as well. I was running a feed mill and could get cheap feed so we figured it was a fair trade. We picked up 6 commercial weaners and he picked up that mangalitsa to try it out. We also got an idaho pasture pig to see what that was all about. We picked up the older Berkshire sow because his wife wanted a lot of sausage and requested we turn one entire pig to sausage. With visions of ribs, bacon, and smoked loin in our heads we told her such an act would be sacrilege but we could look into finding an old sow that would fit the bill.
 

Mini Horses

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I enjoyed the meat from the pigs I raised. They were AGH and marbled well. Excellent meat & no taint from breed. Friendly temperament. And smaller matured size at 250-300#. That said, they are slower growing. Taking a year and the sows had 6-8 in litters. Certainly a "homestead" hog, not profitable for commercial efforts. But smaller is good for a home use hog, especially if doing home butchering. Plus for MY home, great size for ample meat. Beautiful lard!

Like all pigs, they do root. I'm toying with raising another or two strictly for butcher. Not want another "family", cute as they are! 😂 But would enjoy the great pork.

Here's hoping you find a space to enjoy pigs again.👍
 

Baymule

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The older heritage breeds have excellent meat. I’ve raised Berkshire and Large Black cross feeder pigs, Red Wattle, Hereford Hogs, and Hampshire/Yorkshire crosses.

The Berkshire and Large Black cross grew off well and had delicious meat. The Hereford Hogs were eye candy and had good meat. The Red Wattle were my favorite and I raised that breed several times. Hampshire and Yorkshire are good breeds, but I always tried to search out someone raising the old heritage breeds, to support their efforts to keep the old breeds alive.

It would be interesting to cross a Mangalitsa boar over a Large Black or a Berkshire sow.

I hope you are able to get set up to raise pigs!
 

Mini Horses

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In my area, pigs do not sell well. Could be the home of Smithfield is only 30 miles from me 🤣 and the heavily populated area, in general. I'm on outskirts of major population -- and they're spreading out. 🥴 15 years & I'll be a prime housing area. Value in land!!
 
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