Hog Share FAQ
What is a Hog Share?
A Hog Share is the opportunity to purchase a live hog or a portion thereof, have it delivered to a local custom meat processor and be processed in to your favorite pork cuts and packaged to your specifications.
Why do you call them Hogs?
A hog is simply a pig that has reached market size.
Is the meat “gamey”?
No, this is gourmet pork. We have selected heritage breeds of domestic pigs for our herd that have great flavor, marbled cuts and is definitely not “the other white(dry) meat”.
Why don't you just sell cuts of meat?
Sometimes we do. You can check our product sheet here: http://tinyurl.com/ohg2qbpSelling meat requires the livestock to be killed and processed at a USDA inspected facility or sold under a Master Feed Registration as Pet Food. There are not many USDA facilities in our region and we prefer not to use them. We like to offer this for those who want to try our products and minimal freezer space, but the best deal is to get a Hog Share.
How do I order a Hog Share?
Make a deposit here on the website and you will be contacted to fill out the cutting instruction form. You may also email to have a cutting form emailed to you for review prior to order.
How much pork do I get and what does it cost?
This varies because you are purchasing a live animal and a full description is located on the website. We charge $4.50/lb of the hanging weight at the processor, plus there are processing fees. Our experience has shown that a Half Hog Share works out to around $500-600 for around 75lbs of pork and a Whole Hog Share works out to around $900-1,000 for around 150lbs of pork. The total price per lb of meat works out to about $6.85/lb for both half and whole Hog Shares.
How do I pay?
You can pay cash, mail a check, Paypal using “Friends and Family” method or use a credit card in person or online on our website.
How do I know which Hog I am getting?
You can come pick it out or we pick it out for you from a group of fully finished and fattened hogs.
How do I know I am getting pork from my hog?
When we deliver it to the processor, they kill the hog and after dressing it, weigh it to determine the hanging weight. At this point your hog is tagged with your name. This tag stays with your racks of meat until the time you pick it up.
Can we visit?
Of course, I would love to say we are open for visitors 24/7/365 but my wife would kill me, our farm is our home. Just make an appointment. We also like group visits and do other special open houses.
How do I get my pork?
You can pick it up directly from the processor or we will deliver it to you on our schedule.
Where is the processor?
We use two different processors. Brian Mers on Longbranch Rd off of Normandy Blvd and North Florida Custom Meats in Lake Butler.
What cuts of meat can I get?
There is a complete description on the website, but you can get all standard cuts of pork plus special ones you may have never had if you like and many different types of sausage and seasonings. Buying a Whole Hog Share greatly increases your options.
How long does it take?
It varies. We can give you an estimate on order. From the day a hog goes to the processor, it takes at least two weeks. The bacon and other cuts that you choose for smoking are naturally smoked.
How big a freezer do I need?
Plan on 3-4 cubic ft of space for a half a hog. To give you an idea we carry all the packaged cuts from a half hog share in 2 to 3 50lb feed sacks. A 14 cubic ft chest freezer is nice to have. It will hold half a beef, half a hog and a bunch of frozen fruits and vegetables.
What breeds of pigs do you raise?
I say we have old timey red and spotted pigs. Our sows are purebred Gloucestershire Old Spots and Hereford Hogs. Both, heritage breeds. Our boar is a common red hog, akin to the red pigs raised in Florida since pioneer days.
Do use chemicals on your land?
No. We are advocates of permaculture land management and biodynamic (traditional organic) farming. This means we don't spray anything, fertility is gained through building up of organic matter via holistic livestock management and traditional crop rotation principles.
Do you use hormones?
Do you use antibiotics?
Only if an animal is sick and we think antibiotic treatment is the humane course of action. We don't feed any antibiotics and if we do give any it would be to a single animal. We don't even keep any antibiotics on hand. We raise our animals in such a way that need for antibiotics is a rarity.
Do you use chemical dewormers?
We manage our land and rotate our herd of pigs in a way to minimize any parasite problems. We may occasionally deworm a piglet if it appears to be struggling with a dewormer safe for swine and humans.
Do you use any GMOs?
Hog Share pigs are fed ZERO feeds which potentially have any GMOs once weaned from their mothers. The feed comes from Resaca Sun Mill in Resaca, GA, which grows their own nonGMO grains on their farm and is NonGMO Project Verified. Our hogs are traditional bred pigs and are not GM in anyway. Because piglets may have to be sold as feeder piglets to other farmers dependent on demand for Hog Shares and there is no market for higher priced nonGMO feeder piglets, we feed our breeding herd of hogs feed from our local feed mill which buys grains from local farmers. This is no doubt mostly GMO corn and soy. There is only one solution to this problem. Tell everyone you know about Hog Shares so that we can afford to feed all our piglets out to finished Hog Shares.
Can we buy a piglet from you to raise ourselves?
Can we buy a roasting pig from you?
Certainly. They are $4.50/lb on the dressed hanging weight including processing.
Does the processor use nitrates?
Nitrates are a complex subject. But, the processor will do whatever you want and be happy to discuss the pros and cons.
What is Half a Hog?
Recently, friends came to pick up their half hog. They had time to visit, so we reconstructed the pig so that everyone else can see what you get with a half Hog Share. These are not the cuts that you have to get, many of these cuts can be made in to other things. This is the standard size hog that I am raising to 250# live weight. This half hog was a total of 74.5# of actual packaged cuts. The total price was $511.63 which works out to $6.86/lb (This is a better price for hog shares than I have been giving estimates for!)
Here are the cuts from left to right across the top:
4 Boston Butt roasts from the shoulder. These could have also been made in to shoulder steaks and country style ribs.
3 bone in loin roasts. These can also be cut as pork chops at the thickness you choose.
The ham was cured and smoked and then cut in half. This could have been cut in to fresh roasts or ham steaks, fresh or as country style smoked ham steaks.
Then below the ham are two packages of smoked ham hocks. Most folks use these for soups.
In the center is a split rack of spare ribs in two packages.
The belly made 9 packages of cured, smoked and sliced bacon.
Then there were 4 1-1.5lb packages of ground Italian sausage. This could have been left as plain ground pork, seasoned in many other styles or made in to links in various flavors, smoked or fresh.
The legs in my reconstructed pig are made up of smoked sausage links. they got 5 packages of these and they run closer to 1.5lb/pkg.
It is also possible to get the head, feet and tail back as well as organs and extra fat for lard rendering. Pigs are very versatile. Any of the cuts in the picture could have been used to make more sausage. I just had a pig processed for eating myself and selling by the package and I chose to have the entire pig made in to smoked sausage links except for the bacon.
A Whole Hog Share would be twice this much. The price rate for all are the same. Whole shares give you more choices of cuts.
For a Half Hog Share you need about 4 cubic feet of freezer space.