Gloucester Old Spot Pigs

Appearance

A large lop eared pig with a broad deep body. It is mainly white with a varying number of black spots (which folklore claimed were caused by falling apples).

Character

A quiet pig (maybe due to its impaired visibility from its enormous lop ears!). It is hardy and has good mothering qualities.

Meat quality

A fine carcass producing top quality meat for all purposes.

History

The Gloucester Old Spot originates from the Berkeley Vale in Gloucestershire. It was also known as the Orchard Pig as it often grazed in the cider and perry orchards of that area, clearing up windfalls. The breed was first registered in 1914 but if old paintings are to be believed they have been around for a lot longer than that. The breed fell out of favour when more intensive methods of farming were adopted and if it had not been for George Styles (a passionate Gloucester Old Spot breeder) it may have been lost altogether. It is a credit to this man that the profile of the Gloucester Old Spot has been raised, so it is now the largest numerically of the pig breeds listed by The Rare Breeds Survival Trust and it is going from strength to strength.

Numbers

The breed currently has 4 male and 15 female lines and is listed as a minority breed by the Rare Breed Survival Trust.