So, How Much Do Piglets Typically Cost?

If you’ve ever thought of getting into pig farming, you have probably already pondered how much such an endeavor might cost. But however big your dreams are, every herd starts with just a few pigs, or maybe even piglets!

a 10-week old piglet

Piglets are undeniably adorable, but you can’t neglect the financial assessment. How much do piglets actually cost?

Piglets typically cost anywhere from $50 to $250. Some of the variables that factor into the pricing of piglets include breed, pedigree, season, gender, weight and even popularity.

Who knew those precious little porkers could command such high prices. Well, I guess pork is big business and so even the littlest pigs are valuable.

In this article, I’ll explain the factors that influence the price of piglets and give you an idea of how much you can expect to spend to bring home a herd of your own.

What are the Costs of Common Breed Piglets?

When it comes to buying common feeder piglets, you can expect to pay anywhere from $50 to $350 depending on the breed, season and location.

Common breeds like Yorkshire, Hampshire, and Duroc typically fall on the lower end of the price range, with prices ranging from $50 to $150 per piglet, or sometimes higher in peak season, i.e. spring and summer.

These breeds are known for their generally docile natures and high-quality meat, making them popular choices for small-scale keepers and enterprise farmers alike.

On the other hand, rarer breeds like Tamworth, Berkshire, and Gloucestershire Old Spot can cost upwards of $200 per piglet due to their unique genetics and limited availability, and a popularity spike in peak season could send that figure higher!

Something else to keep in mind that prices can vary depending on the breeder: better breeders usually sell piglets of better health from better lines, and will have taken care of healthcare concerns like vaccinations and worming, which can add to the cost.

But that is just the base idea of the price range for common breeds, so now let’s really dig into the other factors that influence the cost of piglets…

Piglet Prices Vary with the Season

It sounds peculiar to those that aren’t versed with raising livestock, but this is absolutely true when it comes to piglets!

Like any other commodity, piglet prices can fluctuate from season to season due to simple supply and demand.

In the spring and summer months, piglet prices tend to be higher as this is the peak breeding season for many pig farmers. As a result, piglet availability may be more limited and prices may be on the higher side.

Conversely, during the fall and winter months, piglet prices tend to be lower as many farms have already completed their breeding cycle and are looking to sell their surplus.

Do keep these seasonal trends in mind when planning your pig farming operations and budgeting for piglet purchases!

If the timetable isn’t a hard variable for you, try to buy out of season when prices are low. You can save a bundle on the beginnings of your herd.

Do Piglet Prices Vary from State to State?

The price of piglets can also vary depending on the state you live in. Generally, states with a strong pork industry and higher demand for piglets will have higher prices.

For example, Iowa, one of the top pork-producing states in the US, may have higher-priced piglets compared to a state with minimal pork production, such as Alaska.

Additionally, shipping costs can also impact piglet prices, as breeders may need to transport piglets from other states to meet demand.

If you’re willing to wheel and deal, a little research on prices and availability in your specific state as well as bordering states can yield the best deals no matter the season.

On the other hand, as we will learn there are some breeds, and some special circumstances, that will lead to piglets with basically fixed prices.

In Some Areas, Heavier Piglets Command Higher Prices

While the price of piglets generally depends on breed, location, and season, weight can also play a role in determining the cost.

In some areas, piglets weighing closer to 10 pounds (4.5 kilograms) at birth may command a higher price as they are seen as healthier and more robust than lighter piglets.

This is especially true for piglets intended for breeding or showing as they need to be in prime health and condition.

The price difference may not seem like much, but it can add up and is worth considering if you’re looking to get several piglets when starting out.

You might not gain any real benefits from these beefier, er, porkier piglets and will just be paying a premium for no good reason.

Pet Pigs Cost More than “Feeder” Pigs

The cost of a pig is greatly influenced by the purpose of the pig. If you’re thinking of getting a pig as a pet, be prepared to pay more than the cost of traditional “feeder” pigs.

Pets are considered luxury goods, basically, and the prices associate with them can be totally out of proportion compared to animals sold as commodities- pigs included.

Also, pet pigs are sometimes raised differently, with an emphasis on socialization and friendliness, and this can drive up the cost.

In addition, certain breeds which are far more popular as pets, such as miniature pigs, and can cost several hundred dollars per piglet.

For instance, a pot-bellied piglet can cost anywhere from $300 to more than $1,000, depending on the breeder.

Compare any pet pig price with feeder pigs typically raised for meat production and you’ll see the latter is invariably sold at a lower price point.

If you’re interested in owning a pet pig, know upfront it will probably be as expensive to buy as any dog or cat.

Pedigree Matters Too

When it comes to purchasing piglets, pedigree will also, usually, impact the price.

Pedigree refers to the lineage and genetic background of the piglet, and piglets from “high-performance” bloodlines will be more expensive than those with less distinguished lineage, or ones with a murky background from willy-nilly breeding.

Pedigree is especially important for breeders and farmers who are looking for specific traits in their own pigs, such as meat quality or disease resistance.

However, for those looking to simply raise pigs for meat production, pedigree may not be as important.

That being said, there’s no contesting that good breeding does turn out superior pigs more of the time, so don’t discount it even if you are a rank beginner to raising pigs.

Good pigs are healthier and usually easier to handle, so the investment is often worth it. You don’t need world-record bloodlines or anything like that, but do try to get decent ones and ask to see the paperwork…

Are there any Special Breed Piglets that Cost a Lot?

Oh yeah. Several special breeds are known to cost a lot due to their rarity and unique characteristics. Some are intended to pets, while others are heritage domestic pigs.

For instance, teacup piglets, also known as micro-pigs, are extremely small and can fit in a teacup when they are young. Bred specifically for their size they cost anywhere from $300 and up.

Juliana piglets are known for their sweet personalities and small stature, and are usually sold for between $500 and $750, though more is not unheard of. Adults can sell for much more!

Feeder pigs are usually not as expensive, but they can be quite pricey.

The Berkshire pig is known for its exceptional meat and is often referred to as the “Wagyu” of pork. Berkshire piglets can cost anywhere from $200 and up, depending on pedigree.

Meanwhile, the Gloucestershire Old Spot is just a very rare breed, known for self-sufficiency, excellent mothering and overall disposition. Single piglets have sold for upwards of $250!

Now, these are examples of the most expensive piglets; yours probably won’t cost that much!

But the more you know about various breeds, the better you’ll be able to set your expectations (and your budget) when it comes to getting your own piglets.

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