Phone: 1-800-323-1361 / cell 218-839-4489

Email:  info@ellerfarm.com

Pastured Pork

Eller Family Farm

In 2008 we started raising our own Tamworth pigs. This is an heirloom pig known for gentleness, excellent browsing habits, lean meat, and a moderate fat layer. Our initial breeding gilts are Tamworth-ChesterWhite/Landrace crosses that came to us from a traditional small farmer near Kettle River, MN.  Edie and Tammy have grown to remarkable size and were mated via artificial insemination to a purebred Tamworth boar from Ohio. In 2010, we added Wizard, a purebred Tamworth Boar from Nila Robinson, Shioctan, Wisconsin. We’ll be offering his youngsters for custom processing spring 2011.   While the pigs wait for pastures to green, they enjoy their organic grain ration, the occasional treat of extra eggs, and organic corn as a top dressing. Their indoor pen is deep bedded straw that they chew into small pieces, then pile into the toasty warm nest. Pigs are naturally clean and joyful animals and would never think of soiling their nest. So far the pigs plowed a troublesome area of the pasture where the invasive and noxious weed Buckthorn had established. They dug up roots and enjoyed grasses, clover, and various forbes. They thoroughly plowed the south paddock and destroyed the troublesome buttercups that are toxic to cattle and goats. By the end of the season, it was ready for reseeding. Everybody works here!

 

Pork raised on pasture with limited corn to finish is much tastier, less fatty, and has a firmer texture than pork raised in confinement or solely on grain rations. The diversity of their diet on pasture contributes to more balanced nutrition for them as well as the folks who eat them. We are exploring alternative feeds to reduce costs and improve quality. Some of the feeds that may be used for finishing include acorns, apples, and almond meal.

 

We market the pigs when 260-270 pounds and with Tamworth breeding we now have lean pork with just the right amount of fat. Customers are encouraged, but not required to inspect the hogs prior to purchase. We will arrange custom processing for wholes/halves.

In 2009 we started selling MN Inspected Whole Hog ground pork. This is made from all the primal cuts to include the shoulders, back, hams, and belly. It has it’s own remarkable taste and we encourage folks to fry some up without seasoning just to be amazed. Then add a little salt, pepper, sage, oregano, thyme or other favorite seasonings and enjoy. We partner with Foley Locker (MMIP) or McDonald’s Meats in Clear Lake (USDA) to produce fresh brats, bacon, and ham. The 2009 batch was good, but the 2011 batch is exceptional. It is MSG-free without any corn syrup solids and about 25% reduced salt in natural casings. A healthy, tasty treat. We also save all the lard, have it ground so it is ready for home rendering. This remarkable shortening is well worth the 1-2 hours it takes to render at home. These products can only be offered for a limited time. We sell direct off the farm or these products are now available at the Mille Lacs Food Coop, Main Street, Isle, MN.

 

Please call or email with questions.

 

 

Watch the pigs grow here……..

Pigs free to be Pigs…

On pasture

Bailey's litter September 2010Foundation Sow Tammy coming in from pasture 2008Baby Tamworths ring around the haybale November 2010Sally, showing her babies the ropes October 2010Baby Tamworths October 2010--Off to pasture