Finishers

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PHOTO REPORT: Anderson Farms, US

Presenting ‘local’ and ‘fair’ food is a growing trend for some US restaurants. They even say they know their farmers. So what does a local and fair farm look like? Pig Progress took a look at Anderson Farms near Madison, Georgia.

Photo

  • Plenty of space for the seven sows and about 100 grow-finishers. The area, far away from any other pig farm, is about 48 acres (19 ha).

    Plenty of space for the seven sows and about 100 grow-finishers. The area, far away from any other pig farm, is about 48 acres (19 ha).

  • PHOTO GALLERY – Anderson Farms, Madison, GA, United States

    Meet Benji Anderson, 31, owner of this small outdoor pig farm. The outdoor approach yields $3 per pound of dressed meat – about €4.89/kg – just enough to cover his costs.

  • PHOTO GALLERY – Anderson Farms, Madison, GA, United States

    In the fields we go. Sow Queen Elizabeth, 5, comes to greet her visitors. In this picture she is only a couple of days before farrowing.

  • PHOTO GALLERY – Anderson Farms, Madison, GA, United States

    Sow Penny is staying put in her hut together with her litter of five piglets.

  • PHOTO GALLERY – Anderson Farms, Madison, GA, United States

    All pigs on the farm get fed the same feed – a ground mixture of soybean meal , corn and minerals.

  • PHOTO GALLERY – Anderson Farms, Madison, GA, United States

    In fact, the pigs consume everything that comes in sight, which includes acorns but also snakes. Some have trouble digesting grass – and it is spitted out again.

  • PHOTO GALLERY – Anderson Farms, Madison, GA, United States

    King Richard is the farm’s boar. Anderson uses crossbreeds of Berkshire, Duroc and Tamworth.

  • PHOTO GALLERY – Anderson Farms, Madison, GA, United States

    This young pig in the middle will not be used for meat production but is destined to become one of the future boars on the farm. By not importing semen or breeding stock, Anderson hopes to keep diseases out.

  • PHOTO GALLERY – Anderson Farms, Madison, GA, United States

    The sows have several wallows (mud pools) at their disposal. This picture was taken in winter, when there was no water in it.

  • PHOTO GALLERY – Anderson Farms, Madison, GA, United States

    Water is pumped up and distributed over the farm area.

  • PHOTO GALLERY – Anderson Farms, Madison, GA, United States

    A side step for Anderson Farms – some acres are devoted to goat meat production.

  • PHOTO GALLERY – Anderson Farms, Madison, GA, United States

    Piglets are weaned at six weeks; grow-finishers share the same large area. Only in the first week, they get some privacy inside a fenced area to get used to the new situation.

  • PHOTO GALLERY – Anderson Farms, Madison, GA, United States

    The older and younger pigs soon express interest in each other.

  • PHOTO GALLERY – Anderson Farms, Madison, GA, United States

    A weaning dip is usually not really present, as the pigs have been used to solid feed since day 10.

  • PHOTO GALLERY – Anderson Farms, Madison, GA, United States

    All growers and finishers share the same feeding place, which is topped up by hand every now and again.

  • PHOTO GALLERY – Anderson Farms, Madison, GA, United States

    The feeding station comes with flaps to shield it off from unwanted rodents, deer or birds. The pigs know how to lift the lids.

  • Once the pigs are between 250 and 300 pounds (113-136 kg), Anderson brings them to a slaugherhouse in Toccoa, Georgia by truck. He is at an average of 100 pigs/year.

    Once the pigs are between 250 and 300 pounds (113-136 kg), Anderson brings them to a slaugherhouse in Toccoa, Georgia by truck. He is at an average of 100 pigs/year.

  • After a few days, he picks up the cuts of meat, which he stores in own fridges.

    After a few days, he picks up the cuts of meat, which he stores in own fridges.

  • He delivers personally to e.g. Pork Burger, a ‘green’ chain with four restaurants in the greater Atlanta area.

    He delivers personally to e.g. Pork Burger, a ‘green’ chain with four restaurants in the greater Atlanta area.

  • Another customer is Heirlooms, in Athens, which since 2011 has been specialising in selling products around concepts like ‘fair price’, ‘local’ and ‘care’.

    Another customer is Heirlooms, in Athens, which since 2011 has been specialising in selling products around concepts like ‘fair price’, ‘local’ and ‘care’.

  • One outcome of the outdoor pork journey – a burger with minced pork and bacon.

    One outcome of the outdoor pork journey – a burger with minced pork and bacon.

One comment

  • E A Abomunsi

    Very impressing! We were familiar with closed sty pig farming, now this brings in a new idea. Great.

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