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I’m pretty new at raising these great LBH hogs. We live on a large certified organic cattle ranch, so when the hogs graze it’s organic, good pasture. I have 2 main questions.
One is where can I get organic feed? We live in SW Colorado and are willing to travel some to get the feed.
The other question is weather or not it is worth it, under these nearly ideal circumstances, to go organic with the hogs? The feed and supplements would need to be organic, but how much difference would these organic hogs be able to sell for?
Any thoughts or ideas about either of these issues is appreciated.
We raise certified organic large blacks in Maine. We can sell a feeder pig for twice as much as a conventional feeder pig, if not more. This is totally market dependent. In Maine there is a huge demand for organic feeder pigs right now, so it is not hard to sell them at a premium price. On top of that, most of our feeders are also pure LB, which makes them even more valuable, in my opinion. If you’re finishing the pigs, there may be less of an obvious market for organic pork depending on what your markets are like. Friends of mine do quite well selling organic pork at farmers market, but most of the butcher shops won’t pay for organic wholes and halves as regularly. Meat CSA type options are also good for organic meat. Direct to consumer is definitly the best bet if you want to get the organic price you need to make money. Hopefully that was somewhat helpful!
bbPress ANTISPAM: Referrer: We buy organic feed for our hogs from Modesto Milling in CA. The best way to buy from Modesto is by the pallet – we mix hog, turkey and chicken feed on the same pallet so we don’t have too much in one type of feed laying around. Freight to Boulder is around $190, it does add about 8 cents a lb. to the base 50 cents/lb.
As for return, we have been finding that people have no problem paying $5/lb live weight for our finished feeders, and we have a waiting list. I must also temper that with the fact we are in a location where a large part of the population is passionate about organic and GMO free food.