Our pigs are 100% free range, which means they are bred and reared outside on the farm. They are free to live outdoors and indulge their natural propensity for rooting and grazing. We do not use sow stalls or farrowing crates. Pigs are intelligent and social animals, which means that free ranging pigs are happy pigs.
We specialise in Heritage pig breeds, namely Devon Large Black and Berkshires. 'Heritage' breeds are those that can be traced back to before industrial farming, when all pigs were kept out in pasture. They had to be able to live outside in the changing seasons, and to derive nutrition from foraging. Some of these rare breeds were on the verge of extinction. In recent times, their popularity has been revived as ethical farming practises are increasing and these traits are again becoming more valuable. Not only do these hardy breeds lend themselves to extensive farming, they also produce robust and marbled meat that is moist and tasty.
Heritage breeds cannot compete with intensively farmed pigs, because they require extra time and care to raise them. They rely on the small but increasing numbers of farmers who are committed to reviving these rare breeds, and the consumers who create a demand for them. Together we can preserve these wonderful animals and enjoy the rich and robust flavour of their meat for future generations to come.
The Large Black pig is known for its taste, pasture foraging skills and overall hardiness. He is slower to mature, but grows to a very large size. Large Black sows are known to be great mothers and produce large litters and plenty of milk. Their black skin protects them from the sun, and they are able to derive nutrition from foraging for roots and bugs in the dirt. This ability has been bred out of many of the pig breeds used in intensive farming. Large Blacks produce excellent bacon and moist meat with old world flavour. Large Black pigs have long droopy ears and a scooped nose.
Marigold and Paula Deen are two of our Large Black sows.
The Berkshire is the oldest pig breed in Britain. Berkshire pigs are famous for their exceptional marbling. Their meat is prized in Japan for its intramuscular marbling. Berkshire pigs lost favour with the advent of industrial farming because they did not thrive in confined spaces and the consumer demand was considered to be for leaner pigs. More recently their darker, flavourful meat and delicious fat cap makes them a favourite with chefs and consumers alike. Berkshire pigs are friendly and curious. They are black with a white face, legs and tail. They have pointy ears and a short, upturned nose.
Jennifer and Clarissa (The Two Fat Ladies) are two of our Berkshire sows.