Mahogany red Hereford Hogs exhibit a white head, ears, legs and oftentimes belly. And the breed enjoys a great reputation for its exceptional meat quality.
The History of Hereford Hogs
This heritage breed’s historic roots go deep in the U.S.
R.U. Webber of Missouri is said to have initiated the first strain during the 19th century, but little was shared on his exact mating. Then, around 1920, breeder John C. Schulte from Iowa developed a strain to match his Polled Hereford Cattle. A group of breeders in Iowa and Nebraska then joined in a cooperative effort to establish the Hereford Hog breed.
They each brought definite goals as to the type, color, conformation and other favorable characteristics in breeding stock. They started by using Duroc and Poland China bloodlines to a considerable extent. Then, through crossing, interbreeding and line-breeding, Hereford Hogs emerged.
In 1934, 100 animals were selected as foundation stock for the newly established National Hereford Hog Association. Today, the association registers about 5,000 head per year, with pigs reported in all 50 states and even abroad.
Hereford Hogs Are Gentle, Hardy Animals
Hereford Hogs possess a gentle disposition and are easy to handle. Their mild temperament makes them great show animals. Hogs reach 200 to 250 pounds by 5 to 6 months of age, and sows mature at about 600 pounds.
Mothers generally produce big litters. Â
Hereford hogs, hardy animals, do well on pasture and adapt to a variety of climates. Though they gain slower than other hybrid breeds, Hereford genetics offer many advantages to meat quality. Specifically, their pork boasts exceptional marbling and a neutral pH, which produces a darker red meat.
Meat quality combined with the uniqueness of the breed make Herefords an easy choice for making direct-to-consumer sales.