All-in, our pigs were $325. We got roughly 140+ pounds of cut meat per pig. That works out to $2.34/lb. However. We also harvested 7.7kg of fat – mostly leaf lard, and were lucky enough to be handed a large bag of offal the farmer hooked us up with. We saved about 7kg of liver and heart. So all things considered, our cost per lb ended up closer to $2 and change. I’ve done my homework and posted about it before. Superb value for money, if you’re willing to get your hands dirty.
I broke the animals and cut loin and belly, one guy cut joints and deboned hams and shoulders, and one lady wrapped as we went. All-in-all, a good strategy – but my body certainly would have liked me better had we had more hands. We had more hands near the end, and it helped a lot. A couple people per pig is likely a far wiser way to share the load. Grinding as we went at the end of each pig was certainly a smart way to handle the ground pork. By far, the biggest error of the day was simply getting started late – hoping to save some km driving by meeting the farmer half-way to the slaughterhouse. Next time, earlier start. It took 9 hrs. Finishing when you’re nearly ready for bed is neither fun nor smart.
I must give some pretty major props to this website. It guides you through cutting pig without a bandsaw. There’s a lot of great videos on youtube on butchering pig – but they generally involve the use of a bandsaw.
More to come.