Niche Production

Economics and Business Management

Information on business development, cost management, returns and record keeping.

Business Development and Management

Agricultural Marketing Resource Center (AGMRC)



Example Production Budgets for Niche Operations

Feed Budgets for Niche Operations

Feed Costs Management

Improving Feed Conversion

Managing Pig Feed Costs in Niche Pork Production

Non-feed Cost Management

Record Keeping

Reducing the Cost of Pig Diets


Example Niche Pork Operations

Albright Swine Farms
Coldwater, Michigan business sells freezer meat, roaster pigs and club pigs.

Berkwood Farm
Coalition of more than 60 independent family farmers, one of the largest American suppliers of 100% certified pure heirloom Berkshire pork.

Joe Huber's Family Farm & Restaurant
Starlight, Indiana farm marketing homegrown products from its own farm market, gift shop and restaurant.

Niman Ranch
Network of over 740 small, independent family farmers and ranchers.

Snake River Farms
Boise, Idaho - business selling American Kurobuta pork, which is 100% purebred Berkshire pork, along with American Wagyu and Northwest beef and other gift items.

Vande Rose Foods
Iowa Falls, Iowa niche marketing company sells Duroc pork to gourmet retailers, high-end restaurants and private clubs across the country.

Marketing Niche Pork and Niche Pork Alternatives

Beef and Pork Whole Animal Buying Guide
Includes marketing terms and information on storage and handling, meat inspection and meat weight, and common retail pork and beef cuts.
Beef and Pork Whole Animal Buying Guide


Fresh Pork From Farm to Table
USDA-FSIS - Q&A site for food quality and food safety information.

Consumers, producers and businesses can use this to find markets, products and producers. Registration required for use. No fee.

Niche Pork Marketing (AGMRC)

Niche Pork Production

Information on biosecurity, disease and animal health management, facilities, genetics, nutrition and reproduction for niche pork producers.


IPIC Niche Pork Production Handbook

Producing Niche Market Pork

Scheduling Pig Flow


Target Annual Production


Disease and Health Management

Effect of a Non-antibiotic Feed Additive (Royal Nutrazyme TM) Additive Effect on Nursery Pig Performance

Minimizing the Use of Antibiotics in Pork Production

Raising Healthy Pigs

Swine Vaccination Considerations

Facilities, Housing and Equipment

Demonstrating Farrowing Alternatives for Small Farms: Insulated Tents for Sows and Pigs
Demonstrating  Farrowing Alternatives for Small Farms

Bedding Management

Environmental Needs of the Pig

Hoop Building Information from ISU Leopold Center

Housing Options

Manure and Mortalities



Alternative  Feed Ingredients in Swine Diets Feeding Small Grains to Swine

Feedstuffs for Pigs

Nutrients for Pigs

Relative Value of Feedstuffs


Reproduction and Genetics

Boar Fertility


Mating or Insemination
Crossbreeding and Hybrid Vigor
Replacement Gilts and Sow Longevity


Hand-mating Sows and Gilts on Smaller Pork Operations Pen-mating Female Pigs: Problems and Potential Solutions



Pork Processing

American Association of Meat Processors (AAMP)

Beef and Pork Whole Animal Buying Guide - ISU
Beef and Pork Whole Animal Buying Guide

Guide to Designing a Small Red Meat Plant - ISU
Guide to Designing a Small Red Meat Plant

Implementing a Recall Program for Small Processors

Maximizing Carcass Utilization in Niche Pork Companies

Packing House Byproducts

Examples of Niche Pork Processors and Marketing Companies

(No endorsement intended or provided)

Heritage Foods
Missouri-based natural pork company was formed in 2001. It also has producers in Iowa, Illinois, Kansas and Arkansas.

Norwalk, Iowa produces prosciutto, a thinly sliced dry-cured ham. Other products include speck, pancetta, coppa, guanciale and lardo.

Nahunta Pork Center
Largest all-pork retail displayer in the Eastern United States, with two locations. The meat is processed in-house.


Niche Producer Series

Pork Quality

Comparison of Carcass Composition, Performance, and Tissue Deposition Rates Among Breeds of Swine
Controlling Factors that Influence Pork Quality
Effect of Pig Age at Slaughter on Fresh Pork Quality
Impact of Dietary Fat Intake on Carcass Iodine Value and Pork Fat Quality
Matching Carcass Specifications of Your Market
Naturally Cured Meats: Quality, Safety, and Chemistry
Niche Pork Quality
Plastic Grid for Quick Measurement of Loin Eye Area

The Effect of Selection for Intramuscular Fat on Fatty Acid Composition in Duroc Pigs