You might be wondering, why do we care about heritage or rare hog breeds?
1. Friendlier pigs: In the past, when these heritage breeds were common place, families would have a family pig that they would raise and eventually eat. Friendly pigs were used as breeding stock and mean ones were not. This propagated gentle characteristics forward to the next generation. Heritage hogs are not friendly like a dog but will let you touch it when feeding and in general are even safe around kids.
2. Forage ability: The ability and desire to forage for their own food and eat grass from pasture. This drive has been bred out of the main commercial breeds so that they can be raised in confinement.
3. Better taste: Many gourmet chefs are turning to heritage hogs for their pork due to the better flavor and tenderness of the meat. The meat is in general more pink and marbled than the “other white meat” you might be used to from the grocery store.
All in all they exhibit the characteristics we would prefer in our pasture pork.