One of the very common questions we get nowadays from blog readers is how much does a pig weigh and how much it costs to raise it. For someone who is not familiar with the subject may think that all pigs weigh the same. But that is not so.
A pig’s weight depends on several factors like age, breed, condition, way of feeding, etc. The average weight of an adult pig is around 285 pounds (130 kilograms). Depending on the species and conditions where your pig is being raised, this weight can vary.
Just five years ago, the average weight of pigs was less than what it is now. At that time, a pig weighed 281 pounds (128 kilograms). But now, our farmers know more better ways to raise a pig faster. Day by day, this average weight will increase. Also, remember that the heavier pig is always not the best pig!
On what factors the weight of a pig depends?:
The weight of a pig depends on some factors:
- Nutritional History
- Way of feeding etc.
Different Breeds of Pig:
In the market, there are different breeds of pig available.
If you want to choose a pig that produces the best meat, you may select from the following:
- Chester White
The following pigs are also some common pigs to raise. They are called lard-producing pigs.
- Large Black
- Gloucestershire Old Spots
Weight of different breeds of pig:
There are a number of pig breeds available. The average weight of an adult pig is around 285 pounds (130 kilograms). Here we will discuss the weight of some common pigs available in the market.
Yorkshire is one of the most popular pigs around the world. They are medium-sized pigs and not suitable to grow in small farms. The weight of a male Yorkshire pig is about 550 to 750 pounds, and the weight of a female Yorkshire pig is about 450 to 650 pounds.
The Duroc is a medium-sized pig that has a moderately long body and a slightly dished face. A mature male Duroc weighs around 882 pounds, and a female Duroc weighs around 772 pounds. They produce a good amount of meat. The farmers usually breed these pigs for meat.
The Berkshire is also a medium-sized pig. The weight of a male Berkshire is about 600lbs (280 kilograms), and the weight of a female Berkshire is about 500lbs (220 kilograms). Its meats are prized for their juiciness, flavor & tenderness, heavily marbled.
Landrace pig is one of the latest breeds originated from Danish. The average weight of a mature male is between 310 – 400 kg (685lbs – 880lbs), and an average weight of a mature female is between 250 – 330 kg (550lbs – 730lbs). Landrace has a long body, long drooping ears, and is a good mother.
A mature male Chester White pig weighs between 550 to 800 pounds (250 – 263 kilograms), on average, and a female Chester White pig weighs between 500 to 650 pounds (227 – 295 kilograms). Structurally it is a very sound and healthy pig. It is known for its mothering ability.
A Hampshire pig is a medium-sized pig that is known for its lean meat and better carcass quality. The weight of a male Hampshire is about 650 pounds, and the weight of a female Hampshire is about 500 pounds. This breed of pig is suitable to grow in all types of firms. It is known for its quality meat.
A Tamworth pig is a medium-sized breed. The male Tamworth has a weight ranging from 550 – 820lbs (250 – 370 kilograms) & the female Tamworth has a weight ranging from 440 to 660lbs (200 – 300 kilograms). Tamworth is known for its great taste and lean meat.
The weight of a male Large Black pig is about 700 – 800lbs (318 – 363 kilograms) & the weight of a female Large Black pig is about 600 – 700lbs (272 – 318 kilograms). Its meat is good flavored and lean quality.
A mule foot pig generally weighs between 400 – 600 pounds (180 to 270 kilograms). A male weighs about 550 pounds (250 kilograms); on average & the average weight of a female is 450 pounds (200 kilograms). It is a rare kind of domestic breed and is known for its lean meat.
A Meishan is a small, grey in the color pig. It becomes mature only by 3years of age. A mature Meishan pig weighs about 350 – 400 pounds (158 – 181 kilograms). A mature male Meishan weighs between 363 – 383lbs (165 – 174 kilograms) & a mature female Meishan weighs between 308 – 328lbs (140 – 149 kilograms).
A Potbelly pig does not weigh much. It is a small pig that weighs about 70 – 150lbs on average, and only a few weighs 200lbs. If they are given love, care, and training, they can be good pets.
How Can you calculate Pig Weight?:
The hanging weight and Live weight of a pig are necessary to calculate the weight of a pig.
Hanging weight is a pig’s weight when it is taken to a slaughter shop for hanging purposes. It is the pig’s weight after all of the different pig parts are being removed like – head, blood, hide, hooves, lungs, viscera, and heart. The hanging weight is generally 40% of the live weight.
The hanging weight can’t be known unless you put your pig on the weighing scale after slaughter. In that case, you should take an approximate value.
Determining the live weight of the pig is an easy task. You don’t even need a weighing scale; all you need to have is a fabric measuring tape.
You should put the tape just behind the front legs of the pig. Measure its circumference in inches. Then, length is to be measured. Measurement of the length is to be done from the base of its ear to the tail in inches.
Next, you should square the girth, multiply the circumference’s square by its length and divide it by 400. Thus, you will be able to get the approximate value of the pig weight in pounds.
Pig Weight = (Circumference)^2 X Length / 400
This equation above will give you the approximate live weight of the pig.
Weight of a pig when slaughtered:
An ideal pig weighs about 270 pounds in the market, so when you slaughter a pig, it will weigh about 270 pounds also. After you have taken your pig for slaughtering in the butcher shop, you will get about 57% of the pig in the edible cut and that equivalent to 154 pounds of meat.
The average weight of a pig when slaughtered also depends on the customer’s demand. Different customers have different demands. Some want meat from a younger pig, as its meats are more tender, and some want meat from an older pig. When pigs are young, their meats are more tender. So, some people like to take their pig to slaughter even if its weight is 250 pounds.
In this perspective, it is really difficult to tell the average weight of a pig when slaughtered.
The volume of meat you can get from a pig:
How much meat can you get from 250 pounds of the pig? A 250-pound pig actually weighs about 154 pounds after you have taken it to a slaughterhouse. So, how this meat is consumed:
- Hams- In a pig, there are two hams. A 28pound of meat can be expected by getting these possessed. By processing these, we can make:
- Cured hams
- Ham steaks
- Ham Hocks
- Fresh hams
- Pork Loins: You can expect about 23 pounds of meat by processing these, such as:
- Pork chops
- Centre cut chops
- Butterfly pork chops
- Country-style ribs etc.
- Fresh side bacon- You can expect about 23 pounds of meat by getting these processed into bacon, salt pork, or fresh sides.
- Spareribs- You can expect about 6 pounds of spareribs. These aren’t processed anymore.
- Boston butt-You can expect about 9 pounds of meat by getting these processed. These are given different cuts that actually come from the pig’s shoulder, not the butt.
- Fresh Picnic- These cuts come from the shoulder. You can expect about 12 pounds of meat by getting the shoulder processed. By processing, you can make a Fresh picnic.
- Feet- The feet actually give 3pounds of meat.
- Head- You can expect about 5pounds of meat from the head. Though This is optional, it can be cooked and eaten. You can also trim it up and add it to sausage.
- Back Fat – You can expect about 23 pounds of meat from back fat. This fat lays on top of the loin along the back. This fat can be kept as lard or added to sausage.
- Jowl- You can expect 3 pounds of meat from the jowl. The jowl is the underside of the neck that can be smoked or cured, similar to bacon.
- Trim- After everything is finished, still, about 10pounds of meat can be trimmed from the bones. To make sausages trim is used.
Bigger size isn’t always better:
A bigger size pig isn’t always better. This is because making your pig bigger to several hundred pounds doesn’t give you much of an advantage. When your pig weighs 225 pounds (102 kilograms), its weight does not grow rapidly anymore with the consumption of more food. That is, if you buy and feed your pig more, you will not be getting much in return. Your money will go to waste. But, if you have free food for your pig, that won’t be a bad thing.
If your pig gets huge in size, its meat quality also declines. It becomes fat, and you will get more lard instead of more ham, bacon, and pork chops.
If your pig has more fat, then you have to throw away those fats while butchering. Throwing those fats means throwing your money away. This is because you have to spend a lot of money before feeding your pig and increasing its weight.
The weight of a pig depends on various factors like- breed, age, condition, way of feeding, etc. If someone asks you, how much does a pig weigh, then you would answer that the weight of a pig is about 285 pounds, on average. It varies from breed to breed. There are a lot of breeds available, and each breed carries a different weight. More weight is not always better. The main thing is, your pig should remain healthier. If a pig is weighted very much, its meat quality declines. So, you should be aware of that.