As the temperatures this past week we had the opportunity to process our first American Guinea Hog together on the farm.
"Sir Loin" was always an established dinner pig when we thought of raising homegrown pork, so there were no misconceptions on his final destination.
We knew going into this breed that they are considered a lard pig, and not a bacon pig. There are 2 trains of thoughts for defining pigs in general, there is the label of lard pig and the distinction of a bacon pig. A lard pig, is well, a pig that produces a lot of lard for baking, soap making, candle making, and cooking. They are typically squatter and slower to grow. A bacon pig is usually longer and leaner than a lard pig with more muscle and fast growing.
We slaughtered on site, and hung the halved pork for 2 and 7 days to see the difference in flavor and texture of the meat. We monitored day time temperatures and have a great week of very cold weather and snow.
After thoroughly reading Adam Danforth's book Butchering Poultry, Rabbit, Lamb, Goat & Pork: The Comprehensive Photographic Guide to Humane Slaughtering and Butchering. Hours of You Tube Bon Appetite breakdowns of pork, and Scott Rea's amazing videos of butchery, Ian took up the knife, and I labeled weighed and packaged.
We used just about everything from the pig, rendering lard, cuts of pork, grinding for sausage and also for dog food, as well as retaining all bones for the dogs also.
Raising American Guinea Hogs has been a great experience for us. These pigs are rarely picky on what they eat and when we are milking all of our goats in the summer months they have the ability to consume all the excess milk that is produced on the farm. They are friendly and easy to move around, and produce wonderful meat and vast amounts of snow white lard.
The lard we use in baking, cooking, and for our goat's milk soaps.
We currently have a breeding pair of AGHA (American Guinea Hog Association) Registered pigs and are expecting a Winter 2018 farrowing.