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Cost to raise pig to market weight

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1 Cost to raise pig to market weight on Wed Sep 18, 2013 11:49 am

Cathyjk

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Curious if those who raise hogs would share about how much it costs to bring a pig to market weight.
And what do you primarily feed them?

2 Re: Cost to raise pig to market weight on Wed Sep 18, 2013 12:32 pm

rosewood

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We don't know the exact answer to the question of the cost of bring a pig to market weight other than a lot more than you pay for pork products at the big box stores. There are benefits beside cost to raising our own pigs. We feed primarily steam rolled oats with medium molasses purchased in a tote bag. We use the same oats for all the livestock we raise here. About a third of each feeding is a commercial hog feed. The pigs also eat good quality hay, garden scraps and kitchen scrapes.

3 Re: Cost to raise pig to market weight on Wed Sep 18, 2013 1:23 pm

uno

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We do not raise pigs, but my mom used to.

She had fruit trees on the property and a milk cow who produced more milk than we could consume. Thus what we were already producing on the farm was shuffled over to feed the pig, reducing the amount and cost of purchased feed. This was, to my mother's way of thinking, the best way to raise a pig, as a means to use up already in place produce and feed. BUt like Rosewood says, if you have to purchase all your feed, there is no way you can raise a pig as cheaply as you can buy it.

But if you have loads of garden scraps, fruit laying on the ground and a milk cow producing vast quantities of milk, that will be the BEST pork you have ever eaten!

4 Re: Cost to raise pig to market weight on Wed Sep 18, 2013 2:27 pm

rosewood

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I forgot to include that our pigs also get cracked, miscoloured or extra eggs slightly dated.

5 Re: Cost to raise pig to market weight on Wed Sep 18, 2013 5:00 pm

Beep

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We have raised 2 hogs this summer, entirely off discarded bakery bread, expired milk, and grocery store cast-offs. We spent A LOT of time and some gas gathering these materials, but not much output of actual cash (hardly any, in fact). We cooked almost all of the veggie scraps, but not softer fruits or watermelons or other melon-y things. They eat an amazing amount of food, especially after about the 4 month-mark. So I couldn't give you a $$ amount, as it can be done very cheaply, but you need to have the time and organization to make it work. IMO, getting pigs is not something to enter into lightly. You need to be available to them. Unlike, say, sheep or chickens, which we allow to free range all day and just lock them up at night.

6 Re: Cost to raise pig to market weight on Wed Sep 18, 2013 8:20 pm

Cathyjk

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Thanks.

Our piggies get whole jersey milk everyday about a quart each (there are six of them)

I read that I should be feeding them about a pound a day for each month in age not to exceed 6lbs, otherwise it's just wasted and they get fat. I am feeding too much!!!
They also get scraps, fruit and whatever else like cheese, yoghurt, cabbage and they get alfafa chop too.

For some reason I had it my head they ate like 6 kg a day!! No wonder my first calculations for feed was about 500 per pig!

More like 200 per pig.

Not trying to do it on the cheap but I also want to have a fair price to sell them at.

Thanks again!!

7 Re: Cost to raise pig to market weight on Sun Sep 22, 2013 11:29 am

Beep

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We just butchered ours. They were probably about 250 lbs each, live weight, 6 months old. My hubby figures we fed them about 100-150 lbs of food/day, divided into 3 meals: a 20L pail filled up with bread, then soaked with about 4 L of milk, with about 20 lbs cooked veg on top. Granted, they quickly out-grew their little rubber trough, so we took to feeding them on dry straw instead, so some of the food would have got trampled into the ground. They had a nice layer of fat, about 2 inches thick at the most, so pretty lean I'd say. They are not cheap to raise well, that's for sure. And unless you are slaughtering and butchering yourself, that's costly too. Just make sure you get a good price for your animals. It's hard to find ethically raised pork. pig 

8 Re: Cost to raise pig to market weight on Sun Sep 22, 2013 12:21 pm

Cathyjk

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Much thanks Beep.

I have to admit how fast the word spread we had pork.. lots of calls for meat.
I have large black crossed with tamworths - had afew calls with folks looking specifically for berkshire (we have a young couple out our way raising berkshires and sheep, really nice folks)

Anyway, I was trying to keep the pigs to about 4-4.50 a lb hanging weight.

I appreciate the feedback.

9 Re: Cost to raise pig to market weight on Sun Sep 22, 2013 3:02 pm

boothcreek


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Working at an abattoir I have to say I discourage regular feedings of milk to pigs(unless you feed really conservatively), they get waaaaaaay to freakin fat!
We get several people that use it as a base for their feed, and at 2 inch+ of fat on them the amount of waste after cutting and wrapping is ridiculous and customers are unhappy when they see what the hanging weight was vs how much is left after excess fat has been trimmed(and we give the trimmed off fat back too, most are not happy go get 2 boxes filled with bags full of fat). A good fat layer on a pig that needs only minimal-no trimming is about an inch, more than that means you either over-fed or waited too long to get them done.

PS: forgot to add, from what I can tell from the pigs we process there is also a noticeable difference of fat quality with each breed when fed milk. Berkshires seem to get a very soft spongy fat(PITA to work with) while Tamworth and Durocs have a much firmer fat.



Last edited by boothcreek on Sun Sep 22, 2013 3:15 pm; edited 1 time in total

http://www.boothcreekranch.com

10 Re: Cost to raise pig to market weight on Sun Sep 22, 2013 3:13 pm

Rasilon

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Not sure if this would help or not but here goes. I read in few seed catalogues that mangels are used as livestock feed. If a person grew rows them in the garden (not sure how many) you could use the mangels to feed the pigs which would bring down the cost of feed. This would make raising your own more cost effecient. I toyed with the idea but would have to talk my daughter into it as i don't think I could do it where i live. Raise the pig I mean I can grow mangels if I want.

Geri tongue

11 Re: Cost to raise pig to market weight on Sun Sep 22, 2013 3:23 pm

islandgal99

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boothcreek wrote:Working at an abattoir I have to say I discourage regular feedings of milk to pigs(unless you feed really conservatively), they get waaaaaaay to freakin fat!
We get several people that use it as a base for their feed, and at 2 inch+ of fat on them the amount of waste after cutting and wrapping is ridiculous and customers are unhappy when they see what the hanging weight was vs how much is left after excess fat has been trimmed(and we give the trimmed off fat back too, most are not happy go get 2 boxes filled with bags full of fat). A good fat layer on a pig that needs only minimal-no trimming is about an inch, more than that means you either over-fed or waited too long to get them done.

PS: forgot to add, from what I can tell from the pigs we process there is also a noticeable difference of fat quality with each breed when fed milk. Berkshires seem to get a very soft spongy fat(PITA to work with) while Tamworth and Durocs have a much firmer fat.
Thanks for the info. Not intending to hijack, I think this is related to the original question...Next year I'm feeding sheep milk whey to my pigs as part of my plan when I start using the milk for cheese...do you have any pigs in being fed whey vs. milk and does that make a difference? And if adding milk to the diet, is there a more ideal age to process them to get the best meat/fat ratio? Is younger/older better?

http://www.matadorfarm.ca

12 Re: Cost to raise pig to market weight on Mon Sep 23, 2013 7:11 am

boothcreek


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islandgal99 wrote:Thanks for the info. Not intending to hijack, I think this is related to the original question...Next year I'm feeding sheep milk whey to my pigs as part of my plan when I start using the milk for cheese...do you have any pigs in being fed whey vs. milk and does that make a difference?  And if adding milk to the diet, is there a more ideal age to process them to get the best meat/fat ratio?  Is younger/older better?
I don't think there is much of a difference, but I honestly can't tell since most feed all of their excess product(excess milk, whey, product that didn't turn out quite right etc etc) after they are done processing, not just a certain part, so who knows, worth an experiment if you have enough of it.

The usual rule with pigs is, after they hit approx. 240 lbs liveweight- process! because from that point on all they gain is fat for the most part and slow right down in growth(no matter the age). With Milk-fed ones that rule seems to be all over the place(depending on how much they got I would assume - bullies at the feeder).... altho I like the carcasses from the ones that finish at a hanging weight of about 175-185 lbs(so, roughly 220 lbs live if not fed for 24 hrs).


http://www.boothcreekranch.com

13 Re: Cost to raise pig to market weight on Wed Sep 25, 2013 5:09 pm

Cathyjk

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Rasilon wrote:Not sure if this would help or not but here goes. I read in few seed catalogues that mangels are used as livestock feed. If a person grew rows them in the garden (not sure how many) you could use the mangels to feed the pigs which would bring down the cost of feed. This would make raising your own more cost effecient. I toyed with the idea but would have to talk my daughter into it as i don't think I could do it where i live. Raise the pig I mean I can grow mangels if I want.

Geri   tongue
I bought giant red mangels this year but never got around to planting them BUT the breeder we got a jersey from (he has large blacks) plants a huge field of them and then lets the piggies out to root and eat.

Seemed to me to be perfect I read the giant mangels have about 16 percent protein!! The guy i bought the seeds from hangs mangels in the chicken coop over the winter to keep them entertained and obviously for food.

14 Re: Cost to raise pig to market weight on Wed Sep 25, 2013 5:14 pm

Cathyjk

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boothcreek wrote:
islandgal99 wrote:Thanks for the info. Not intending to hijack, I think this is related to the original question...Next year I'm feeding sheep milk whey to my pigs as part of my plan when I start using the milk for cheese...do you have any pigs in being fed whey vs. milk and does that make a difference?  And if adding milk to the diet, is there a more ideal age to process them to get the best meat/fat ratio?  Is younger/older better?
I don't think there is much of a difference, but I honestly can't tell since most feed all of their excess product(excess milk, whey, product that didn't turn out quite right etc etc) after they are done processing, not just a certain part, so who knows, worth an experiment if you have enough of it.

The usual rule with pigs is, after they hit approx. 240 lbs liveweight- process! because from that point on all they gain is fat for the most part and slow right down in growth(no matter the age). With Milk-fed ones that rule seems to be all over the place(depending on how much they got I would assume - bullies at the feeder).... altho I like the carcasses from the ones that finish at a hanging weight of about 175-185 lbs(so, roughly 220 lbs live if not fed for 24 hrs).


It isn't the milk in of of itself that is the issue - like people gaining weight, it's total calories.
The rule of thumb is a pound of food (ration) for each month. So, when I add whole milk, they don't get as much ration. I don't have it down to exactly the calorie content, but when they get milk, they get about a 1/2 lb less ration.

And yes, the optimum is about 1 inch of fat.

We have friends who raised hogs commercially in the States and they got paid based on the diameter of the tenderloin and the amount of fat... more than an inch of fat, they got paid less.

BUT, even when you go by the rule of thumb, some pigs gain more fat than others.

I am hoping to curb the fat with this year's pigs as they have about an acre to root around in and exercise.

15 Re: Cost to raise pig to market weight on Sat Sep 28, 2013 10:53 am

Hillbilly

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We just butchered our 3 pigs. We had them a bit longer than we wanted, and total cost for hog grower was $703.

16 Re: Cost to raise pig to market weight on Thu Oct 17, 2013 11:12 am

Beep

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Good to know, Hillbilly, thanks for posting. Did you feed them exclusively hog grower?

17 Re: Cost to raise pig to market weight on Thu Oct 17, 2013 12:03 pm

Hillbilly

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For the most part, hog grower was their main source of food. They got scraps and things we wouldn't eat as well, but not a huge amount. We ended up having them about 3 weeks longer than optimal, so the price would be slightly less for the grower.

18 Re: Cost to raise pig to market weight on Tue Nov 05, 2013 3:39 pm

pfarms

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I will admit, I havent read all the posts, short on time today. There is a short and a long answer. Short is just feed cost, long is everything for keeping and raising and butchering and breeding pigs.

Just feeding pigs from weaning to butcher weight for us is about $150 pr pig. That is us feeding a lot of grain and hay on pasture. That is paying $5 a bushel of grain.



For us to keep our breeding stock, raise piglets, and maintain their fencing etc yearly is about $4,000 a year, that is for 7 adult pigs. That includes feed, water, hay, fencing repair, vet costs, electricity (water deicers, heat lamp at birth, etc), and minerals. So everything. That is on the high side. I always look at the high side so I am not short. So that will give me 7 breeding pigs and get their piglets to weaning age.

http://dtfarm.webs.com/

19 Re: Cost to raise pig to market weight on Tue Nov 05, 2013 4:11 pm

Guest


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Do you subscribe to Small Farm Canada magazine? There was an article in the last one on raising pigs and it had a costs chart that included ammortization for fencing etc.

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