Pig products are among the highest concentrations of protein for any meat source, and Loudoun pig farmers generally adhere to responsible and sustainable growing practices. Valued for its versatility, swine products can appear in pure forms, such as bacon, ham roasts, pulled pork, pork chops and shanks, etc; processed forms such as sausage, hot dogs and lunch meat; and as an additive to other products, such as beef and venison.
Essential Nutrition in a Different Form
Like beef, lamb and goat products, pork products are very high in protein, iron, zinc, and selenium and B vitamins. Unlike their fellow barnyard protein, pork products tend to be higher in bioactive compounds like thiamine, creatine, taurine and glutathione, which is essential to the healthy function of your body.
Find Local Pork
Despite reputations of laziness, adult pigs can run 11 mph, and baby pig races are part of the fall festivities at Great Country Farm.
What Makes Pork So Different?
While beef, sheep and goats are all ruminants, allowing them to use ruffage (i.e. grasses, leaves, brambles) as their primary source of food, hogs are different. Much like humans, pigs only have one stomach and digestive process, which can handle a more omnivorous diet.
At different times of year, pigs in Loudoun County may feast on fruit and tree nuts from the orchard, melons and pumpkins from the patch, tables scraps from the farm house, uneaten produce and weeds in the fields, and even spent grain and grapes from the beverage-making process. Through this varied diet of fruit, vegetables, nuts, grubs, meat and roots, pigs are exposed to a cornucopia of nutrients, which is reflected in products made from them.
DID YOU KNOW?
Pigs are considered to be a sign of fertility and virility in Chinese culture, where you will see prominent figures of pigs in bedrooms.
Loudoun’s Rich Tradtion in Pork Farming
While today’s pig farming is done primarily to the west of Purcellville and Lovettsville, it has deep roots on the outskirts of Leesburg and points east. The oldest surviving documents in the Loudoun County Circuit Court records are a lawsuit filed by farmer J.S. Camell against the town of Leesburg for seizing his hogs. That suit was settled for $2.57.
Perhaps Loudoun’s most historically significant pig farmer was the fifth U.S. President, James Monroe, who inherited a 2,000-acre tract from his uncle in the early 1800s. He retired to the property after his retirement from public office, and held the property, and the pigs who lived on it, until his death in 1831.