Wood Family Farm

March Farm News
March 21, 2013, 2:13 pm
Filed under: 2013 | Tags: ,
Spring seems to be teasing us with sunny moments and downpours of rain!
Here on the farm, we and the animals are enjoying the sun and warmer weather. The pigs that were born last month are now ready to be sold as “weaner pigs”. They are called “weaner pigs”, as opposed to “weiner pigs”, because they have just been weaned from their mothers. The next designation is “feeder pigs”. The “feeder pig” designation is appropriate as you feed and feed and feed the pigs to butcher size. From weaning to butcher size, the pig will grow from about 30 lbs. to 230 lbs. in four months. On a strictly grain diet, they will consume about 1/4 ton (500 lbs.) of feed. At this conversion rate of grain to meat, pigs are the most efficient animal on the farm.
Continuing on the topic of pigs…I received an armload of my grandfather’s 1954-1955 Successful Farming magazines. The magazines are interesting in the their emphasis on “modernizing” farming. One article is titled, Women Want Leaner Pork–NOW. Prior to WWII, pigs were bred for two categories: meat and lard. The lard was more valuable than the meat. One of our neighbors commented that in the old days they would know when to butcher a pig because it would be too fat to get up! Since the 1950s, pigs have been bred to be leaner to the point that modern pigs are about 50% leaner than in the 1950s. Modern pork is so lean that the meat is often too dry. To counter dry pork, “enhanced” pork was created. Enhanced pork has salt water injected into the meat so that the flavor is enhanced and the meat has less tendency to become dry. Our pigs are neither enhanced or too fatty. We strive to balance the ratio of meat to fat by being careful to select appropriate feed, monitoring the pigs growth and butchering at the appropriate time, working with our butcher to ensure excessive fat is remove if required, and visually inspecting our meat cuts before we sell them. We also recognize that each pig is unique and the amount of fat varies from animal to animal. Ultimately, we hope to satisfy our customers with tasty, natural, quality pork.