If you have heard amazing things about Mangalitsa pig meat but have not idea what kind of pigs there are, then keep on reading for everything you want to know about Mangalitsa pigs!
What Are Mangalitsa Pigs?
In a nutshell, Mangalitsa pigs are a hardy, curly, fatty, delicious, friendly breed of pig. Shall we go on? Of course! There is so much more to talk about!
Everything you ever wanted to know about these unique pigs will be covered. We will not get into how to raise them, yet, as that will be coming soon! The focus will be on the breed itself so you can determine if this breed of pig is right for your farm, homestead, or freezer.
History of Magalitsa Pigs
Mangalitsa (also called Mangalica) pigs are native to Hungary. At one point in time, these pigs were quite popular and then they became almost extinct. Why – you might ask? Well, for the same reason that people changed their diet (to their detriment) when saturated fat was declared to be bad for your health. People switched to unhealthy vegetable oils, trans fats, and high carbohydrate foods. And, chronic disease skyrocketed. But that is a whole other topic. If you are interested in those topics, head on over to trinakrug.com, but for now, let’s get back on topic!
Before the 1900s, Magalitsa pigs were sought after for many things, one of which the delicious lard that they produce. But they quickly fell out of favor as noted above and quickly fell out of favor. Did you know, though, that Mangalitsa pig lard has less saturated fat than butter and more unsaturated fat than butter? And better yet, there is no trans fat!
An effort between farmers in a cooperative effort to save the breed began and as of today (ish) there are 50,000+ (ish) Mangalitsa pigs around.
Is a Mangalitsa a Curly Haired Pig?
You bet it is. They are often mistaken (from a distance, at least) as sheep. Those luscious locks allow them to adapt to most climates. It keeps them warm and they can also shed some of it to stay cool.
Are Mangalitsa Pigs Good For My Farm?
I certainly think so. But perhaps I’m biased. There certainly are pros and cons to Mangalitsa pigs. We heavily considered them all before choosing to go with the curly haired giants.
Let’s talk about some of the drawbacks first and then move onto why you will forget all that and fall in love with them!
Magalitsa Pig Cons
One of the biggest drawbacks, if you are in the market of selling the pigs to butcher, is that their time to maturity is a bit longer than the average pig. For Mangalitsas to be ready for butcher, it takes about 15 months. At this point, they are around 300 pounds.
They also are big rooters (although I personally find this as a PRO) and will tear up the land. I don’t mind this because I rotate my pastures and it is like a free pre-till.
They are good foragers, which means you can save on feed.
Their meat is worth the wait! And the fat… oh the fat….
They are calm and easily adaptable to different climates.
How is Mangalitsa Meat different than traditional pork?
Do you know what has flavor? FAT. Period. Fat has flavor. Fat IS flavor. Fat is love. Ah, Fat.
In all seriousness, the meat and fat from a Mangalitsa pig are like none other and it does have a lot to do with the fat. They are over 65% fat, 30%+ lean meat. A “normal” pig is over 50% lean meat. The meat of the Mangalitsa pig is reddish and will most certainly never be called “the other white meat”. It is beautifully marbled with fat as well. It is also high in Omega-3 fatty acids which we are most definitely lacking in our natural diet with how the average person eats.
Mangalitsa meat is nicknamed the “Kobe beef of pork” for good reason.
Where to Buy Mangalitsa Pigs
Cherry Hollow Homestead in Yamhill Oregon (yes, that is us) will be selling both piglets and ready to butcher Mangalitsa pigs in 2022. Get on the signup /waiting list here:
Mangalitsa Piglets Information and Waitlist
Mangalitsa Pigs for Butcher Information and Waitlist
We will be publishing a full list of where to buy Manglitsa meat and pigs shortly!
Should You Buy a Mangalitsa Pig?
Well, that is only a decision you can make. But not only are they a great addition to a farm, they are a tasty addition to the dinner plate! A win/win!