Not All Pastured Pork is the Same
November 16, 2023
Things are so confusing these days with instant information at our finger tips. Regenerative, sustainable, all natural, pastured are all hot buzz words these days. But what does pastured pork or chicken, for that matter really mean?
In short, it means that the pigs are raised on pasture and not in a CAFO (confined animal feeding operation) aka hog barn. However the nuances are lost with most people and truthfully, with most pastured pork producers. Most farms think that they can capitalize on the pastured pork movement by putting pigs outside and feeding them whatever they want.
This is where we (Coyote Creek Ranch) go above and beyond the call of duty. Let me explain....
Conventional pork you buy in the store is fed a ration consisting of 3 or 4 ingredients. Corn, soybean meal and a vitamin/mineral pack. Maybe some byproducts like dried distiller's grain is added to cheapen the ration. These are almost always GMO (Genetically Modified Organism) grain, highly sprayed with glyphosate (RoundUp.)
While some pastured pork producers still feed this ration, most will at least use non GMO grain. Which is an improvement.
However, our ration, we feel is a huge improvement. We mix it ourselves right here on the ranch. Corn, Barley, Milo, Oats, Wheat, Black Oil Sunflower Seeds, Thorvin Kelp, Fish Meal, Soybean Meal and a Vitamin/Mineral blend made especially for Berkshires. When we have it available we also use our Goat's Milk and Duckweed out of our pond as protein sources. As if that wasn't enough we ferment the feed for 24-48 before feeding it to make the nutrients more bioavailable and for the prebiotics/ probiotics.
Big deal, you say? Well, besides the added nutrient density it gives our pork (and Chicken) and exceptional flavor, it almost guarantees a happy healthy animal. One that almost never needs medicine or even chemical de-wormers.
Technical stuff aside, the proof is in the pork chop, as they say.
So fire up the grill and decide for yourself!!!