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Discussion Starter #1
I have a few interesed 'buyers' for my pigs, but, I'm having trouble figuring out what to charge for them. It cost me around $230 to buy, feed, and medicate(deworm) them. I have figured in gas for pick up of pigs and feed. What is a fair price to charge for my time/work invloved? I realize that Canada and the US have different values on their dollars, but a rough guess is all I'm really looking for. I don't know if this helps, but a side of beef goes for $1.90/lb. Thanks all. :D
 

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Cash market in the USA is over $50.00/100#'s, live weight. Let's say, a 250 # pig would be purchased for $125.00. Check the internet search for cash live hog prices and see what you get. The market does change on a daily basis.
 

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What will they weigh? It sounds like you have about a dollar a pound (Canadian) in them. That is most likely more than they would be worth on the market for butcher hogs. But you can't raise them for the fun of it.
$1.90 for beef is about double the live price. Hogs dress out a little more percentage wise than cattle. I'm only guessing that live hogs are going around #.75 Canadian. If you sold them for about $1.75 hanging weight it would be it the same markup range as beef. I'm not sure that would make you a profit.
 

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I am hoping in the great-somewhere-out-there future to be able to:
1. find cheapest sources for feed (grow your own or scrounge or whatever)
2. develop a market for reliably raised animals (raised healthy and happy)
3. find happiness in what we do even if it just covers the property taxes and insurance.

Seems making a real living at this kind of thing requires treating the land like a machine and the animals like assets (only) and having cheap. cheap land costs.

But we are hoping to make a go of it over the long haul and see where it takes us.

Jackie C., I hope you can find buyers who care about how you raised your animals, but best wishes either way.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Well I'm not going to "make money" at least not much on these particular pigs. It was my first year doing this and well you learn as you go sometimes. I know what I've done wrong this year but am not giving up. Next year I plan to have a plot system, penning them within a moveable electric fence, and moving them around to cut down on feed costs. I will also plant more garden just for them. I also plan to subscribe purchase pigs, meaning if you want me to raise one for you, you pay for puchase price and half food costs up front. I plan on doing this with chickens and turkeys as well.
I won't lose money put out for this years pigs, but I don't want to over charge either, I would like people who purchased a pig from me to be happy with it and come back for more next year, and maybe word of mouth about how good and healthy eating they are will generate enough interest to gain more customers. I did not plan on making big bucks from these guys, more of a learning experience.
It's not all about money either, I really enjoyed raising them this year. These guys have entertained me more than I would have thought and they were easier than the chickens and turkeys.
 

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I'm no expert but seems to me that humanely- raised and well fed pigs are worth more than "market" pigs. By market pigs I mean those that are grown in small concrete pens or small mud stalls and fed rotted waste foods, all of one grain, or fed antibiotics to make up for poor management practices. The market is there for people who want to throw in a little lovin' care and give them some clean space and fresh air, and vary their diet. Antibiotic and hormone free counts for something, imo. Pasture raised is a great way to grow and market and the prices aren't comparable to market prices. With your plans for next year, I think it merits looking into that market and you will get a better return for your investment while providing a decent life for your animals. BTW, my power came back yesterday at 4:30 :) feels good to be back on.
 

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Ontario prices this past week were 75.4 cents (Canadian) per lb, DRESSED WEIGHT. Mark them up however you want, but I know to buy from my uncle right now, where I know how they were raised and by whom, will cost me 85-90 cents plus the butcher bill.
 

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Jackie, You might make out better if you sold them by the head live. Just go by what you have to have out of them and charge accordingly. I never cease to be amazed by what people will pay for "healthy food"
That way they aren't putting a per pound price on the finished product.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks everyone, I'll do ok on these guys, its just that the people that have shown interest are neighbours and I don't want to over charge them. I am going to make it clear to them that they are getting a good deal on this healthy meat in exchange for some word of mouth advertising. This year I basiclly want to recoup what I've put into them and a little extra for the work. I'm sure next year I'll be better prepared to cut the feed costs and make a little money on them. I think I'll do what you suggest uncle will, sounds like I might come out a little ahead that way.
Welcome back Marcia, glad to see you have your power back, even though we all hate the power companies, it sure sucks going without it! I really hope you have no more hurricanes, I can't imagine having to suffer through what you have. The worst we get here in Ontario is cold and snow, nothing as devastating as you southerners get!
 

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jackie c said:
Welcome back Marcia, glad to see you have your power back, even though we all hate the power companies, it sure sucks going without it! I really hope you have no more hurricanes, I can't imagine having to suffer through what you have. The worst we get here in Ontario is cold and snow, nothing as devastating as you southerners get!
Thanks Jackie, there are probably a lot of Floridians thinking about going north :) I admit it even entered my thoughts when I heard this is supposed to be the beginning of a new 40 year cycle in weather where more frequent hurricanes will be experienced. :eek: Good luck with your pigs :)
 
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