Life on a pig farm is not just about caring for the pigs, there are countless integral roles that make a farm successful. With thousands of pork-related jobs, many on family-owned farms, many of today’s pig farmers go to college to study agriculture, animal science or business before they start working full time on the farm.
It takes a team to provide the best animal care on today’s farms. There are a variety of responsibilities from caring for pregnant mother pigs to helping piglets get a healthy start.
When a litter of pigs is born, their lives begin in the birthing room, a day one care team member is there to ensure delivery goes well and help the piglets begin nursing. This job is important to help piglets get a healthy, comfortable start.
There are a variety of different farms in Ohio. As most pigs grow and are weaned from their mother, they are moved to another barn with different equipment specialized for the next stage of life, where they will continue to grow. While one family may be responsible for the mother pigs, they still work together with growing partners, which are also farm families. The larger farm will offer support staff to work on communication, quality assurance and troubleshooting.
Meanwhile, crop farmers are working to grow corn and soybeans and haul it to the feedmill where workers process the crops into food for the pigs.
Drivers are needed to deliver pig food and transport pigs.
In order to keep a farm running smoothly, a team of maintenance staff, including diesel and ag mechanics as well as feedmill and barn maintenance staff monitor and repair equipment. Maintenance is a critical component of providing the best animal care.
There are many elements to farming that go well beyond the barn or field. Like any business, pig farmers must understand operating costs and risks. They rely on support from accountants, bookkeepers, secretaries, building teams, environmental support, insurance specialists and many more people.
IT services and data management people may work on-site or remotely to monitor the entire process and collect data to identify opportunities for improvement.
After about 6 months, the pigs have reached market weight of 250 to 285 pounds. At this point they are transported to the meat processing plants, which follow strict government guidelines for processing and handling animals and meat products.
From here the pork is distributed to grocery stores, butcher shops and restaurants, helping feed Ohio families the ham, bacon, sausage, pepperoni and pork chops they love!
Ohio farmers are proud to share that it takes a team of good people to raise healthy pigs and make quality pork. We hope that you will consider a career on or supporting an Ohio bacon farm.
For more information, visit OhioPork.org