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Acorn Fed Pork Will Be The Next Big Thing E-mail
Tuesday, 16 December 2008

I have just returned from a week long trip to Spain. There, I got to taste the famous acorn-finished ham that the gourmets of the world are raving about and paying $1000 a ham for.. While this ham was indeed good with a nutty taste and a translucent buttery fat, I was even more impressed with the delicious pork steaks from the acorn-fed pork. Since December is the end of the acorn-grazing season, this type of pork was plentiful in Spain and was in great demand. There is currently an acorn-finished domestic pork available from Iowa but this is from gathered acorns fed in a drylot situation. Dr. Robert Perry of the University of Kentucky said this creates an entirely different kind of pork from a true woods grazing pig and is in no way is similar to the Spanish product. Perry recently returned from an extended tour of the Spanish acorn pork production area. He believes acorn-finished pork could be a major artisanal food product for the Appalachian region. Virginia grazier, Joel Salatin, currently is finishing 800 pigs in his woods with limited grain supplementation near Staunton, Virginia, and plans to increase to 2000 pigs in the near future. He said he is currently netting around $3000 an acre with his pasture and woods raised pork. His pork is a major feature at the Chipolte’s Mexican Grill chain in the northern Virginia area. Salatin will be a featured speaker at our Pastured Pork School in Atlanta, January 30 and 31. Details of this school are available elsewhere on this website.