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 Genetic diversity is very important and the use of rare breed pigs in you breeding program can help to ensure we have those genetics available in the future.

Unfortunately, unless you are a hobby farmer, the reality is that you need to make your free range piggery financially viable.

Using rare breed sows in a cross bred program and infusing the best attributes of these pigs into your herd is still a way to ensure the survival of the rare breeds.

The Wessex Saddleback Pig

The Wessex saddleback pig is enjoying some popularity at the moment as it has featured on a few lifestyle programs on television.  The reality is though that these pigs are very hard to sell to butchers although you may find a market in the restaurant trade if you are prepared to do the work and build your client base.  Don't get caught up in the hype or it may cost you dearly.  Registered Saddlebacks are very expensive.This is another very slow growing, fat pig with course black hair.  They are best suited to the hobbyist looking for something that looks nice in the paddock and will keep the home freezer well stocked.  It will also suit those wishing to sell into farmer's markets.

If you are considering a profitable, commercial free range operation and plan to earn your income from pigs, this may not be the breed for you.  They would do well in a crossbred program using a pure white boar over them.

The question about which breed tastes best is a common one.  The environment in which the pig is raised will have the biggest influence on flavour.  Rare breed pigs are usually kept by small producers on free range farms and this would explain why people notice such a difference in taste compared to pork produced intensively.  White crossbred pigs will also taste exceptional when raised under outdoor conditions.

Flavour is all about how the pork is produced.

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The opinions, advice and information contained in this website have not been provided at the request of any person but are offered by  PROOF and Australian Pig Farmers solely for informational purposes. While the information provided has been formulated in good faith, it should not be relied on as a substitute for professional advice. Australian Pig Farmers, PROOF or do not accept liability in respect of any action taken by any person in reliance on the content of this publication.

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