Feeding Potatos to Pigs

Discussion in 'Pigs' started by Cornhusker, Jan 8, 2004.

  1. Cornhusker

    Cornhusker Unapologetically me Supporter

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    Has anyone ever tried feeding pigs potatos from start to finish?
    From what I've read, potatos have about 60%+ of the protein corn does and more calories.
    Would it be feasible to raise potatos to feed pigs as opposed to buying corn?
    Can pigs be fattened on potatos?
    Can they eat the tops?
     
  2. Matt NY

    Matt NY Well-Known Member

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    The tops are poisonous. I fed quite a few potatoes to my two pigs, but from what I have read and gathered from folks that have done it, the potatoes need to be cooked. The food value is higher if they are steamed. My pigs didn't like them raw, but ate them right up when cooked. They really like them mashed with salt, pepper, butter and milk.

    I think it would be easier and lots less work to go with corn.
     

  3. Karen

    Karen Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Yes, the tops are poisonous!! I haven't heard of many pigs who will eat potatoes raw, but most all of them like them cooked. You also have to watch for green potatoes because they can make them sick.

    Potatoes don't really have many calories (unless you add milk & butter). Pigs do better when feed a complete diet with lots of other foods. They love variety!!! They also need certain amino acids, and other vitamins and minerals that are not found in potatoes so it is important to also feed them food that has the correct values. For instance, corn supplies 100% of a pigs nutrional needs -- pototoes supply only 28% (these figures are from "Small Scale Pig Rasing" by Dirk Van Loon). Bakery waste (stale bread, etc.) supply 75-80%; so you can see that pototoes really aren't the best choice for pigs; however, they can be a cheap suppliment if you have access to lots of them.
     
  4. John Hill

    John Hill Grand Master

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    Yes, I remember my father cooked potatoes for his pigs and they were fed mixed with skim milk. Don't recall any of those happy porkers ever complaining!
     
  5. Cornhusker

    Cornhusker Unapologetically me Supporter

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    Thanks for all the answers :)
    The reason I was wondering about potatos is that I can raise so much more per acre than corn, and since there isn't a ready outlet for spuds, I thought maybe feeding them to pigs would be an easier route.
     
  6. John Hill

    John Hill Grand Master

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    Cornhusker, as I recall we only boiled the spuds once a week or so. We had a couple of oil drums set up as an outdoor cooker. I think if you could get a really big pressure cooker you could cook a lot of spuds quite economically.

    As far as I know, what is good for us to eat is also fine for pigs so whatever you can add to the potato mix to make it more exciting would go down well.
     
  7. Carol K

    Carol K Well-Known Member

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    My husband says that when he was in Germany the farmers used to have big drums full of boiling water and just keep cooking the spuds up. They had huge piles and would just go get em from the pile at feeding time.

    Carol K
     
  8. RANDEL

    RANDEL Well-Known Member

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    i once fed a pair of hogs one winter on primarily cull potatoes (boiled) and...roadkill. i was very discerning about the roadkill tho. it was wintertime and if i went to town, say, and spotted a rabbit on the trip back that hadnt been there on the trip out, id know it was fresh. i didnt use anything too grisly. ive since heard that this was done quite a bit in depression days, and since the depression only really ended in new mexico about ten years ago...

    i too boiled spuds in a big drum on top of a discarded woodstove. i'd cook maybe twice a week or so. like i said it was winter. i finished em on corn tho. i read somewhere recently that no matter how u feed, if u finish on corn the last six weeks the pork will taste right.