A different kind of pig, a different kind of pork! We raise two rare, heritage breeds of swine at Corva Bella. The Kunekune pig (a New Zealand heritage breed, originally kept by the Maori people), and the Meishan pig (a globally threatened Chinese heritage breed with a rich historical legacy). Both Kunekune and Meishan are slow growing, heritage pigs that are efficient on pasture and are fed a varied diet of pasture, hay, fermented grains, windfall fruit and nuts, milk, eggs, beets, pumpkins, sunflowers, sweet potatoes, barley fodder, and garden bounty. We believe in “slow meat” and are part of the #SlowFood movement. Our pigs are sustainably and kindly raised on our small permaculture farm in Upstate SC. Our feeding regimen includes no added hormones or antibiotics.
Breed conservation is a major part of our work, and breed utilization guarantees the ongoing sucess of the breeds we champion! Our delicious and tender pork is a fortunate “side effect” of our conservation breeding programs, where only the best animals continue forward as breeding stock for future generations, while those who aren’t as exceptional or conforming to breed standards, are kept for meat. In the words of The Livestock Conservancy, “Breed the Best, Eat the Rest”.
Ours is a uniquely different approach to small-scale pork production, sustainably based on the future health and success of our beloved breeds. We believe in happy and stress-free pigs. All of our pigs freely roam in pasture and forest areas, where they graze, forage, nap in the sun, wallow in the mud, and sleep in warm and dry pig houses at night. Our herd is protected by a team of Karakachan livestock guardian dogs, Vladimir and Valeska.
PORK… THE OTHER RED MEAT!
Both Meishans and Kunekunes are old fashioned type pigs, which results in a more red, marbled meat and firm, flavorful, creamy fat. Our pork has a rich and complex taste profile, that some describe as being halfway between pork and beef. We recommend cooking low and slow. The Meishan pig is a delicacy in China and Japan and both pigs have been featured at Cochon 555! Some chefs describe the pork as being the “Kobe beef of pork”.
Naturally-reared heritage breed pork is worlds apart from regular grocery store pork, which is a product of factory farming. Animals in confinement are fed primarily corn and soy, as well as “empty” calories, such as production leftovers from bread/cereal/bakery factories. The result is a pale and lifeless pork that cooks up dry and bland. We won’t even comment on the sad lives confinement animals live, sometimes never seeing sunshine or feeling grass under their hooves.