I am not currently taking reserves for cut meat. With the pandemic and everything I am taking this year to do upgrades on the butcher shop and farm. I have a lot of smoked bacon, smoked hams, smoked ham steaks, smoked trotters, smoked hocks and smoked jowel (similar to bacon).

“The meat is absolutely delicious. The freshness, color, texture, and taste of the meat is unlike anything I’ve found in the stores, even expensive ones like Whole Foods. My mom who was born and raised in Italy said the meat is delicious. She grew up eating only food/meat that the family grew. For her to say that is seriously high praise.”
-Toni Boiano, Rhode Island

“Just wanted to tell you that I ate the BEST pork chops I’ve ever tasted. I simply grilled them with a little salt, pepper and garlic because I wanted to taste them, oh my!!!”
-Sue K., Vermont about Sugar Mountain Pork

“As the Meat Fabrication Instructor at New England Culinary Institute, I had several opportunities to use Sugar Mountain Farm pork. I was always impressed with the quality of product and the professional manner in which it was handled. My dealings with Walter and his wife were also very professional, while passion for their endeavor was always evident. The expansion of their operation to include an inspected slaughter and processing facility is a welcome move for small agriculture in Vermont.”
-Chef Bryan Severns, New England Culinary Institute, Vermont

(Click For Big Picture)
Updated route not showing slaughterhouse.

Recommended Reading:

“With the on-site abattoir that Walter is pursuing I see great opportunities. With every transaction I made with him he has been prompt, professional, and delivered a product of superior quality.”
-Peter Ireland, Former Chef & Owner, Carpenter & Main Restaurant, Norwich, Vermont

“I was so pleased to learn that Sugar Mountain Farm will be developing an on-farm slaughter facility. Sugar Mountain has been an integral part of our annual Pig Roast here at Magic Mountain, and I can only imagine how on-farm slaughter will improve your already excellent product.”
-Bob Williams, Inn on Magic Mountain, Vermont

Northeast Organic Farming Association of Vermont (NOFA-VT)
Vermont Fresh Network,
Rural Vermont
The Vermont Grass Farmers’ Association,
Vital Communities,
and a farm.

Vermont Dept of Ag Wholesale & Retail Licenses
USDA/State Inspected slaughter & processing

27 Responses to Literature


    Marvellous. Please help me with your business plan. I have started a small farm but i don’t have a plan. Please help me.Siness plan. I have started a small pig farm.

    • I don’t know of any available sources of business plans specific to small pig farms however I would suggest just starting with general business plan outlines and modifying them to suite your needs. This is how I’ve done mine for various businesses over the years. See this search pattern.

  2. Ralph says:

    Funny how things flow. I was looking for business plans and numbers and the like for small ag operations for a report I’m writing and found this post. There’s not anything I can find that’s readily published on costs, anywhere! Everyone talks about startup like it’s free, like “just use stuff you find along the road”, it’s a joke.
    The best hit I got, Sylvester, was one that just appeared this morning :
    Only thing is I don’t think they do pigs at all!

  3. Dear Walter,

    I am very impressed with the way you are running your farm. I am an artist studying an MFA in Social Practice at the California College of the Arts in San Francisco. I have been looking at the idea of significant otherness (this is a term coined by Donna Haraway, have you heard of her?) Significant otherness acknowledges other species as worthy of respect and as important partners in mutually shaping our existance. I find that your farm exempilfies many of those ideas.

    I had a question, how are your animals killed? I have read they need to be stunned first? I know that having your own slaughterhouse is a huge relief for the animals as transportation I believe is very traumatizing. Do you have a particualr way of killing you find more humane? And personnally how do you deal with the killing of animals you obviously care and respect?

    I appreciate your time and thank you and your family for your work!



    • I’m not familiar with Donna Haraway or the term Significant Otherness. I’ll have to add them to my winter reading list.

      Many people are interested in the topic of how to stun and kill humanely. I’ll have to write about that in detail sometime. Do you know of Dr. Temple Grandin’s work on this?

  4. James says:

    Great site! . your info on rotational grazing was exactly what i was looking for.

  5. Zach says:

    Can I have permission to use your cut graphic on my website? Been trying to put one together myself and honestly yours is perfect for our situation.

  6. J. Chairez says:

    Looks delicious.

  7. david molosi says:

    We have just stocked up 30sows for our new piggery and we are looking for plans and advise for a small on farm slaughterhouse. Is it possible for you to share this info and related building plans?

    David Molosi

    • Yes, trot on over to the butcher shop page which links to all the articles about how we have been building our butcher shop and well as floor layouts. I don’t provide blue prints because I am not a licensed architect or engineer but you can make your own from the drawings and descriptions adapting the ideas to your needs and hire a professional engineer if you need to do so. In the articles linked to on that page you’ll find a lot of links to the USDA web site and other resources. Follow all links.

  8. Nancy Miller says:

    Where can one purchase fresh pig’s ears for human consumption?

    • We sell them and can supply you locall. See the oddments section of our order form / price list at the link above. If you’re buying a small quantity and needing shipping it may not be worth it because the cost of shipping is quite high so I would suggest looking around locally. If pigs are being slaughtered there are pig ears to buy.

  9. jennifer says:

    Hello, i am looking for the best way to breed my pig, shes 6 mo. Originally i had thought i would insiminate but nowvnot sure. Thank you forbthis awesome site.

  10. Cory Raisbeck says:

    On-Farm Butcher Shop – We have build
    our own on-farm Vermont state inspected butcher
    shop to and above USDA standards here on our

    We have built…. I think is correct??

  11. lauren says:

    Hello my name is Lauren adnd I love pigs I have always wanted a pig but I don’t have a barn or some where to put a pig. My parnts don’t think that pigs are cute and could take care of a pig and plus we don’t have eongh of money for a pig but we have two dogs. I would like to have an address because it dosent have it on your site [website] or if there is an place where the address is where is it so I can write it down.

    • Lauren, according to your web browser you’re in Ohio and we’re a long ways from you. If you look at the bulletin boards at local feed stores you may find pigs offered for sale. Another place to look is in the classified ads in newspapers. If you’re looking for a pet pig I would strongly suggest getting one of the smaller breeds like Pot Bellied which get to around 300 lbs. Our pigs are large farm breeds that can easily grow to over 1,000 lbs – they’re meant for raising for meat as they grow so quickly. A pig can be fairly expensive to feed, figure on about one to two tons of feed a year for the large farm breeds, less for the small breeds. You may want to see the article Pet Pigs. They are very cute when they’re small but they get very big.

  12. Jerry Peters says:

    Hello Walter, I have 4 Berkshire pigs that I am raising for the first time, I am setting up my electric fencing so I can pasture them, I need to place a new feed order from the farm elevator but am wondering if I need a more custom feed mix, the last feed I got consisted of 200 lbs of corn with 46% soybean meal, 28 lbs of hog premix, 96 lbs of Lacy Barley, I would appreciate your thoughts. Thanks, Jerry

    • Since I don’t do a grain feed I can’t give you a lot of info on it. is a good online place to start looking. The book “Swine Science” is tops. Morrisson’s book “Feed and Feeding” is a gold standard.

  13. Tony Lisella says:

    Hi there, I’m trying to work my way through all of your posts to glean all of the information I can for when I delve into the world of pastured pigs in the near future. Just wondering if you had a list of other recommended books or readings on the subject. Tanks for all you are doing.

    • For those interested in finding some winter reading here is the starter books I would suggest:

      The first book I would suggest is “Small Scale Pig Raising” by Dirk van Loon. He just updated it in 2014. This book has been out for a long time and the first edition was excellent. I expect the update is even better. The first edition which I read was not focused on pasture but covers pigs most excellently.

      The second book I would suggest is “Harris on the Pig”. This book is about old time pigs and was written long ago. Very good read.

      “Feeds and Feeding” by Morrison as well as “Nontraditional Feed Sources for Use in Swine Production” by Thacker & Kirkwood for old and new views of many feeds. Add to that the web site.

      “Garth Pig Stockmanship Standards” is a very good source book on pigs in general although the focus is confinement pigs. It can be found in print and online.

      “Swine Science” is more about modern commercial hog raising but well worth reading.

      “The Meat We Eat” rounds it out.

      Discussion groups are all good places to go for sharing information and asking questions. Delve into the archives for years of knowledge. If you have a question there is a good chance someone else has already asked that question so the search feature on forums is invaluable. On FaceBook try Pastured Pigs for Meat and Profit.

      You’ll also find about 2,500 articles here on my blog about how our family raises pastured pigs. We have about 400 pigs on pasture and deliver weekly to area stores, restaurants and individuals so there is a fair bit of accumulated experience over the decades.


  14. Kelly Padden says:

    I can’t find your search field..but can you give me your thoughts on hanging pork? How long is too long and under what conditions should pork be hung. Thanks!

    • On my screen the search field is on the right side of the page below the text that is below the poster of the pig cut chart.

      I hang pork. Five to seven days hits the sweet spot of aging, cycle time and economics. See this article Hanging Around. I did research on this back in 2003 initially. Subsequently I’ve seen scientific research that backs up my results. Makes sense. Meat’s meat.

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