As a pork loving family, I thought it was really important that we know where our pork was coming from and how it got there. In the process, we became friends with the incredible family behind South Texas Heritage Pork, Mark and Kelley Escobedo. Starting literally from scratch, all they had was a lot of beautiful land and the desire to do it the right way. They didn’t even plan on becoming full-time hog farmers but became BFFs with Google and learned how. They raise Heritage hogs that feed on custom blended food (you’d think it was trail mix for people it looks so good!)
Their hard work and dedication was rewarded when Animal Welfare Approved awarded them the first certification for pig production in the great (BIG) state of Texas. Click on the link to learn more about the stringent requirements to receive this certification including:
- Must be a family owned farm
- Animals must be chosen with consideration of their ability to thrive in the prevailing climatic conditions of the farm, in pasture-based, free range, outdoor systems
- Animals must have a feeding plan that will guarantee a varied, well-balanced and wholesome nutritional regime appropriate for their age
- Happy homes that protect them from the elements
- Happy environment that is tested for chemicals
- Protection from predators
You might ask, how do the Escobedos protect their pigs? With big friendly Anatolian Shepherd and Great Pyrenees dogs! Keep in mind that pigs don’t need to be herded. It could actually cause a lot of damage to the final meat product if the pigs are always being herded around. The Escobedos selected breeds that were known for being loyal guardians, protecting their flock from the coyotes and other natural predators in the area. These dogs take it a step further too and bark at cars that are driving too fast on the road that goes by the farm.
Where can you get your hands on this meat? Find Mark and Kelley at the Pearl Brewery Farmers market every Saturday! You can also reach out to them and don’t forget to keep in touch with them on social media channels!
You can learn how to visit the farm or just get your hands on some farm fresh pork belly!