Hanging Weight Vs. Live Weight - Homesteading Today
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#1
08/02/12, 09:49 AM
 Join Date: Dec 2010 Location: Maryland Posts: 3,604
Hanging Weight Vs. Live Weight

We took our pig to the butcher last week, and they don't do live weights on animals. Our pig's hanging weight was 200 lbs. Is there an easy way to guestimate live weight? The guy said he'd estimate 250 lbs...but he just guessed.
#2
08/02/12, 10:08 AM
 Join Date: Apr 2012 Location: Minnesota Posts: 61
Ours was 400 Live weight with a hanging weight of 294lbs - that is about 74% of the live weight. If your pig was 250 live, hanging 200, that would be about 80% - so I'm thinking your live weight was higher than 250 - but I don't know that there is a sure way to tell. If you went with what we had at 74% of live weight, your pig would have been approximately 275lbs. I'm no math genius and I'm no pig genius - there are probably others on here that are and will share their expertise and knowledge with you
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#3
08/02/12, 12:01 PM
 Join Date: Sep 2010 Location: Michigan Posts: 817
I think the general rule of thumb is 72% but it depends on breed, body shape, if they count the head, how much fat they might trim off, etc. I'd guess more like 275 to 280 for the average meat pig.

Too late now, but there is a way to estimate live weight by measuring girth and length. It's pretty accurate. (Girth x girth x length) / 400

Measure girth around the body right behind the front legs. Length is base of tail to spot between bases of ears along the natural curve of the back.

I usually take about 5-10 pounds off, seems I always go just a little high.
#4
08/02/12, 02:29 PM
 Join Date: Dec 2010 Location: Maryland Posts: 3,604
Quote:
 Originally Posted by cooper101 I think the general rule of thumb is 72% but it depends on breed, body shape, if they count the head, how much fat they might trim off, etc. I'd guess more like 275 to 280 for the average meat pig. Too late now, but there is a way to estimate live weight by measuring girth and length. It's pretty accurate. (Girth x girth x length) / 400 Measure girth around the body right behind the front legs. Length is base of tail to spot between bases of ears along the natural curve of the back. I usually take about 5-10 pounds off, seems I always go just a little high.
We tried that measuring thing and our last measure came out to something like 300 lbs, which seemed kinda high.
#5
08/02/12, 09:47 PM
 Join Date: Jul 2011 Location: Missouri Posts: 2,276
Quote:
 Originally Posted by MDKatie We took our pig to the butcher last week, and they don't do live weights on animals. Our pig's hanging weight was 200 lbs. Is there an easy way to guestimate live weight? The guy said he'd estimate 250 lbs...but he just guessed.
What breed of hog ? Did the hanging weight include the head skin and feet.
If it is a York or factory type pig with the head,skin,feet on it was around
290 lbs. live weight.
If it was a Tamworth it would weight around 250 lb. live weight.

Best,
Gerold.
#6
08/03/12, 06:51 AM
 Join Date: Dec 2010 Location: Maryland Posts: 3,604
Good questions, Gerold. I'm not sure what breed she was, she was a cross. Duroc and something maybe? Here's a thread with pictures of her.

And I'm not sure if it included head/skin,etc. I thought the standard was just to dress them (gut them) and then weigh? I'll have to ask when I go pick her up.
#7
08/03/12, 07:13 AM
 Join Date: Jul 2011 Location: Missouri Posts: 2,276
Quote:
 Originally Posted by MDKatie Good questions, Gerold. I'm not sure what breed she was, she was a cross. Duroc and something maybe? Here's a thread with pictures of her. And I'm not sure if it included head/skin,etc. I thought the standard was just to dress them (gut them) and then weigh? I'll have to ask when I go pick her up.
Looks like she is close to 290 lbs. Nice looking pig.
Some processors included the head etc. in the hanging weight some don't.

Best,
Gerold.
#8
08/03/12, 07:24 AM
 Moderator Join Date: Jul 2004 Location: Mountains of Vermont, Zone 3 Posts: 8,891
We use the measuring method every week for selecting pigs for market and find it quite accurate. It does take some practice to measure consistently and some cooperation from the pig. See:

http://sugarmtnfarm.com/how-to-weigh...with-a-string/

We find that:
Hanging Weight = 72% of Live Weight
Commercial Cuts Weight = 67% of Hanging Weight

The Commercial Cuts is what people are used to seeing in stores. Not everyone wants the head, feet, etc. However there is a lot of good eating in that other 33% from soup bones to trotters, etc. See:

http://sugarmtnfarm.com/what-good-is...-nose-to-tail/

Your 200 lb hanging weight pig probably weighed about 300 lbs live weight.

Note that the method used for slaughter can affect my percentages above. We have scald/scrape, head and feet on. With skinning, head off, feet off it will be different.

Cheers,

-Walter
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#9
08/03/12, 07:44 AM
 Join Date: Dec 2010 Location: Maryland Posts: 3,604
Thanks for the help everyone! Walter, we used your method of measuring, and she was pretty cooperative so I'm pretty sure my measurements were pretty accurate. We just thought 300lbs seemed high, but I guess looks are deceiving!

And we are getting everything back that we can...feet, fat, ears. The head will be made into scrapple. Can't wait to pick it up!
#10
08/03/12, 07:45 AM
 Join Date: Jan 2008 Posts: 2,644
In commercial hogs the typical yield is 75%. This is a head on, skin on carcass.

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