I update this every year to keep everyone current on the costs of raising your own pig. You'll find last years version here.
Question from email: "I'm interested in raising my own pig to eat. What will it cost me?"
For pigs, the cost of raising is pig is the cost of the newly weaned pig + the cost of the feed to bring the pig to market weight + the cost of the pen to keep it + the cost of the labor. I'm going to ignore the cost of your pen and land, and talk about just the money you'll need to spend to feed the pig to market weight.
In western Washington, where I farm, a weaner pig will cost you $100. This is up $15 from last year, and it's a reflection of low supply and high demand. Some folks are paying $125 in the spring for a weaner.
It will take between 600 and 800lbs of feed to get that pig to market weight at $400/ton (July 2011 price). Using the higher weight, that's $160 in feed, giving you a hard-cost (piglet + feed) of $260. This is up substantially since 2010, when feed was $290/ton.
Having someone come to your farm and kill the pig will cost $55, and for that price they will shoot the pig, skin it, gut it and split it down the backbone. For an additional $0.55/lb they'll cut it into your pork chops and roasts and so on. Butcher costs haven't changed since 2010.
Adding it all up, you'll pay $260 for the pig and feed, $55 for the kill, and $110 for the cut-and-wrap, for a total of $425. This will yield approximately 150lbs of meat, for a cost per lb of $2.83, up $0.40/lb from last years number, with the majority of that increase due to higher feed and piglet costs.
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