Every year, we purchase 8 week old, 40 lb, Berkshire piglets from our neighbor, Jon Clothier, whose farm is just north of us. His family has been breeding and raising Berkshire pigs for two generations.
We put these little piglets on organic pasture in ¼ acre movable pens and give them proper pig huts to live in. They spend the next four and a half months at Kinnikinnick Farm doing all the things that pigs like to do. They root around and tear up the pasture. They turn everything they can find or dislodge into toys. They particularly like to play with soccer balls and feed pans. They build nests and mud wallows, and are eternally curious. They are particularly interested in all the different boots and shoes we all wear when we go into their movable pens to feed them. We feed them local grain ground and mixed into a pig ration by our local coop.
Berkshire pigs are a rare, heritage breed. They originated in England and at one time the Royal family kept a herd of them at Windsor Castle. Their meat is well marbled. It is darker, firmer, and more flavorful than any pork you can buy at a commercial super market.
Hometown Sausage Kitchen in East Troy, WI processes all our pigs. Hometown is a small USDA certified artisanal sausage making operation. It is owned and run by John and Tom, two accomplished Chicago chefs who decided to become artisanal butchers. They breakdown the pigs, one by one, into dry cured bacon, chops, sausage, hams, and other pork cuts. Their state of the art smoker produces the most incredible bacon and hams we have ever tasted.