We currently keep four sows on the farm, a Gloucester Old Spot and three Large Blacks.
We choose not to farrow the sows twice a year, but instead give them a fallow period so each sow only produces a single litter of piglets each year. The pigs we’ve chosen give the best pork, but as they’re more suited to the temperate climate Southern England we feel only farrowing once a year places less of strain on them.
Like the lambs we keep breeds that are suitable for traditional cuts at a younger age, but equally as they mature are ideal for bacon. Being able to produce a range of cuts is important for variety but also a more traditional approach.
They spend time outside during Spring, Summer and Autumn, often with a pig ark for shelter, but during the winter we can bring them into a barn where they are able to bury themselves in as much straw as they need.
We feed them on a specially formulated organic diet and supplement this with more entertaining items such as excess vegetables from the garden, and they can often be found eating their straw bedding too!