The trouble with pigs

So I have these four pigs. I’ve only done one other cow pool with pigs, and that was a couple of small feral hogs, and we bought most of the meat. The shares were smaller, there were fewer people involved, and it was with a butcher I knew well and trusted.

This pool is much more complicated. The farmer wants to sell to Nettles Sausage, a butcher I have never worked with. So far only 12 people want 25# shares. That’s only 300 pounds of meat shares so far. The problem is there are four pigs. The basic conversion from live pig to cut meat is 72% according to the Beef and Pork Whole Animal Buying Guide. 72% of 440 pounds is 316 pounds… just a little more than we have sold. I doubt the farmer will be willing to split his pigs between two butchers since Nettles is a USDA butcher shop… they can resell the pork he brings there, whereas Crawford’s can’t.

Also, the pricing structure for the two butchers is different. Crawford’s has a small killing fee and charges 55 cents a pound hanging weight, which is the weight of the animal after it’s been gutted, skinned, and the head and hooves cut off. Nettles charges no killing fee, but it’s 50 cents a pound live weight. If I’m doing the math right, that comes out to over $4 per pound for the final per pound price with the price per pound live weight the farmer wants. Our limit is $4 per pound.

I just don’t know if I should do this one. It’s the first pool I have felt less than confident about.

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