At EcoFriendly Foods, all of our pigs are raised on pasture, in an environment that lets them be pigs. If you look at wild hogs in nature, you see that they are foragers, that they have a great sense of smell, and that they root with their strong snouts. In fact, pig and plow come from the same root word. You will never find a happier pig than one up to his shoulders in dirt, chewing on wild potatoes or dandelion roots. And since a happy pig = a tasty pig, we always make sure that our pigs have plenty of ground to run around on and root up.
Because pigs literally tear up the landscape, it’s important to use that to the advantage of the farm, not the destruction. The industry’s solution is to put the pigs on concrete so they have nothing to dig up. This makes a very boring and hard life for the pig. On the other hand, you can’t really put them out in the pasture and expect the grass to last very long. You have to move them frequently, and allow the ground they’ve worked to rest for an extended period. This requires thoughtful, creative planning and a holistic understanding of natural systems.
These frequent moves ensure that our pigs have abundant access to a well-balanced diet, full of proteins, fats, vitamins, and minerals: insects, larva, crayfish, lizards, medicinal plants and roots, grasses, seeds, nuts, legumes, fruits, etc. And just to make sure they’re meeting all of their nutritional needs, we also supplement their diet with a mixture of locally-sourced grains, legumes, root crops, nuts, fruits, berries, kitchen scraps, and salt and minerals. Occasionally, they even get a little raw milk or whey – which they love!
To learn more about raising pigs, click here.
Our Farmers:Willi Starling | Starling Family Farm (Autryville, NC) | Farmers Cross: Poland China, Chester White, Berkshire, Duroc, Hampshire Roy Swanson | Swanson Family Farm (Callands, VA) | Specialty Crosses: e.g. WattaBaw (Red Wattle, Ossabaw Island Iberico)
Our Production Standards at a glance
What we ARE and what we ARE NOT?
- We are not certified organic.
- We use no herbicides or pesticides on the pastures where our pigs live.
- We use no hormones or artificial growth stimulants.
- Our pigs are free of antibiotics.
- Our pigs are pasture-raised.
- Our pigs are Certified Humane
- Our pigs are regionally raised within either the Cheaspeake Bay or North Carolina Sounds watersheds.