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About our PigsThe Ballakelly pig is born and bred on the Isle of Man. Blending aspects of the Yorkshire Large White and Landrace breeds with the less common Duroc, it is a unique and distinctive animal, raised to respond to the specific features of its environment.
This is important because, as with all of our animals, we want the Ballakelly pig to thrive in nature. Unlike in intensive pig farming, where animals are bred to be smooth, pink and suited to the indoors, the Ballakelly pig is fit for living intuitively, inside and out. The Duroc characteristics of a larger frame, a seasonal coat and an auburn hide that doesn’t burn in the sun make ours a robust, hardy pig that chooses to spend time outdoors even in harsher Manx weather.
Unlike on industrial farms, our sows have piglets in smaller, less uniform numbers. This makes for relaxed mums and healthy babies, living stress-free lives from their first day.
Our pigs eat barley that we grow ourselves. It is an advantage to grow our own crops for feed, and to utilise the animals and how they bring nutrients to the land as part of our growing cycle. This is old school, but very sustainable. As such, the local land and climate can determine the character of our meat; Ballakelly pigs are as Manx as the hills, and our produce has low food miles in every possible sense.
Nutritious natural diets, peaceful lifestyles make for pork that genuinely is bursting with flavour and taste. People tell us that Ballakelly pork tastes ‘like how pork used to taste’ – that is, less uniform, with juices and fats that melt and crackle as they should, and a greater depth and variety of flavour, within and across cuts. As part of our minimum waste ethos, even our sow mother pigs become remarkable meat. Loin bacon from sows tastes richer than classic bacon, with a distinct fat make-up and wider structure – which our customers at the markets actively seek out for this reason.