Thistle Hill Farm – Blog

…doing what comes naturally

Category: Pigs

Thistle Hill alumni club….porcine chapter…

….Thistle Hill sows are smarter than your average pig!                                 Consider exhibit 1: These two sows had their litters minutes apart….and instead of remaining on opposite ends of the barn, they’ve combined their “resources”.  All the babies nurse on row on one sow and then move to the other sow.  Meanwhile, the first sow flops over […]

In case you were wondering…..

….people are always coming up with value-added cuts.  For instance, the very latest idea is breeding Bacon Burgers.

Mission accomplished….

…if you detect a note of smugness, it is because “Boss Hog” has bred our three sows and is now looking forward to the “blessed event” in March. He’s a Gloucester Old Spot…and an ideal cross for our Tamworth.  There’s a good reason the British call Tamworth “the bacon breed” and GOS increases the yield without […]

We aim to please….

….nothing’s too good for a Thistle Hill animal.  It turned very cold the other night and so we put out a bale of hay for our pigs to burrow into for warmth.  Today it’s sunny and the temperature is rising so they simply plopped down on top.  That’s our new boar and his three sows.  […]

Yes, we’ve got pork….

….though it’s still on the hoof. We do expect harvest in time for the holidays.  The larger pigs are approaching 250 pounds or a little more.  Our target weight is 300. This group includes Gloucester Old Spot though most are crossed with Tamworth, our favorite for bacon.  Next year we may experiment with raising a greater […]

Enjoy your pork chops….

….and if they’re from the supermarket…or you’re eating at most restaurants….it would be better not to focus on this picture.  These are mama pigs….waiting to be bred or waiting to birth…or just waiting.  It’s how they spend their entire lives….not just during breeding… cages so small they can’t turn around…lying in their own waste…filled with antibiotics […]

Move along…nothing to see here….

So it’s a million pigs….not to worry.  Notice that the story says the farm is owned by Smithfield’s in Virginia….not that Smithfield’s is owned by China as in Beijing!  Besides, our government says the pork is perfectly safe…just like all that ground beef with USDA labels.

Return of the Pork Pak….

….a last minute cancelation of a whole pig, makes it possible for us to sell 10-pound Pork Paks….again….briefly.  The demand for our pigs has moved us to offering just halves and wholes….but for as long as they last, the 10 pound package is back and costs just $75! The Pork Pak includes 5 lbs of […]

A fussy eater….

….not a phrase you associate with pigs.  But this one wants things just so.  First, she likes company when she eats.  And she does not want her milk on top of her cereal….separately please. Most pigs could care less but this one’s mother taught her proper etiquette.  She eats even more if grandson, Church, stays […]

“Stay with quality….

….quality will always sustain you.”  That was the advice this butcher’s daddy gave him.  Lovely. Here’s a short film that is an ode to country bacon and ham and a man from Virginia who has made it his life’s work.  Heavily-salted bacon and ham are not my favorites but I’m not going to quibble with […]