Best value for family meat?

ARC55

Farm Hand
Messages
73
I'm hoping that some of you experts can help me out. Raising the pigs went well enough. However, I've run every calculation I can think of, and we're pretty much going to lose money every time we do it and that's even after processing the pigs at home by ourselves. The meat does taste better, and we know how it was raised which feels good, but it's still cheaper to buy pork from the store. We're not big into chicken meat, so that rules raising them out. Which farm animal is the best value to raise in order to provide the family with fresh meat?
 

OhSusanna

Golden Chicken
Messages
153
I think you're giving up on the pigs too soon if you've only been through one cycle. Raising animals for meat on a small-scale is almost always made cheaper by growing things that they can eat, allowing them to forage for food whenever possible, choosing varieties that mature quickly, breeding them so you always have fresh stock, and selling off your surplus so you aren't feeding more animals than you need to.
 

Urban Homestead

Golden Chicken
Messages
185
I've wondered about it too. I'm not sure that chickens are the best value either, not without selling some of the eggs at least. To make a profit with livestock I think it needs to be a large operation.
 

Shelbii

Farm Hand
Messages
108
I would agree with the others on this one. Give it a few year's at least. If you grow their food that should cut the cost a lot. Our neighbor raises pigs so I'll ask him.
 

Stocky

Farm Hand
Messages
12
You can try growing some crops that can both be sold and used to feed the pigs. It can look costly at first, but it might be better in the long run. Another advantage here, instead of buying from the store, is knowing what goes inside your pig and their environment.
 

ARC55

Farm Hand
Messages
73
@Stocky, those are good points. It is valuable to know how my pigs lived and what they ate. I have to say that the pork we raised is more tender and flavorful than anything that I've ever picked up at the grocery store.

@OhSusanna, I didn't have much for them to eat forage wise, but I can work on that. I think I'll give them another round and then reassess after that.
 

Digger

Golden Chicken
Messages
116
I haven't raised them myself, but I've heard that meat rabbits are the best bet. My neighbor seems to do pretty good with his. They breed readily, give birth easily, and mature quickly. They're also easy to process at home.
 

Almost Eden

Golden Chicken
Messages
186
I haven't raised them myself, but I've heard that meat rabbits are the best bet.
My only issue with that (well, aside from killing Thumper) is that they're not dual-purpose animals. Maybe it would work if you chose a popular breed and could sell some to pay for the feed. That might offset some other expenses too. Good on your neighbor for creating a viable business with it!
 
 
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