The Free Range Breed
Plantagenet Pork is a composite breed of Landrace, Large White and Duroc pigs. This mix of bloodlines promotes hybrid vigour and a temperament well suited to the free range production system.
The Free Range Farming System
- Our farms are located within 50km of the Plantagenet region and part of a diversified mix of operations involving cropping, cattle and sheep.
- All of our sows and piglets free range in social family groups. The pigs have the opportunity to express normal behaviours such as nest building, and introducing their litters to their sisters and peers. When the weather is inclement the pigs find shelter in their straw bedded huts and when it is hot the pigs seek protection from the sun in their own mud wallows (sunscreen for free range pigs). In addition to being very contented animals who will never see a farrowing crate, some also enjoy panoramic views of the Stirling Ranges.
- When the piglets are ready to become self sufficient, they move to eco shelters and a free range paddock where they are put into social groups of the same age. The eco shelters have deep straw bedding which provide protection from the weather. The free range paddock is open-air and bare dirt and provides a natural outdoor environment where the pigs are free to express natural behaviours.
- Our free range production system is based on similar free range pork models operating around the world and is managed by a team of experienced production specialists. The farms are routinely visited by veterinarians who monitor the health and welfare of the pigs.
- Plantagenet Pork has a comprehensive HACCP-based quality system in place which covers animal welfare, food safety, eating quality and farm biosecurity to protect the high health standard of our pigs. Our quality system is also independently audited and verified under the SQF 1000 programme, so our customers can remain confident in the integrity of our production philosophy.
Why corn fed?
Although corn is very expensive in Western Australia, we believe it is a necessary feed source to obtain the best flavoured pork. Our trials show that corn increases the meat's moisture and gives a sweeter, finer texture with a full flavour. The fat from pigs fed on corn also develops a creamy, silky texture which makes for fantastic eating.
- Where possible we don't use grid electricity at all! In fact, we limit our environmental footprint by putting systems in place that minimize energy use. Wherever possible, we use solar panels.
- As part of a sustainable agricultural system, the breeding farm is incorporated into arable farming rotation. This reduces the farmer's need for artificial fertilizers to grow crops that follow.
- Bedding from the eco-shelters is composted and used on other areas of our farms or sold as natural fertilizer. The compost aids in increasing the organic content of the soil and improving overall fertility.
- With the lower temperatures and humidity, free range pigs flourish in the Plantagenet area. All our staff sign an animal welfare commitment and are personally responsible for the animals we rear. In our view, pigs that are produced in a free range natural environment suffer less stress. This results in healthier animals and better tasting, better quality meat.
Plantagenet Pork is reared free range and fed a diet including corn for superb taste and tenderness. Try it as part of your next meal!