Frequently Asked Questions
The Anyone Can Farm Experience –
Hog Harvest and Charcuterie Questions
The “how to process a hog” classes are step-by-step, hands-on butchering classes. The Anyone Can Farm Experience will touch on some of your most frequently asked questions about the hog butchering and processing weekend classes.
- Will I have to shoot the pig? I don’t think I could kill an animal.
No. At the class, the instructor for the Hog processing class will provide instruction on the most effective way to dispatch the hog. The instructor will then dispatch the hog showing the location on the hog, and the caliber of ammunition used for the most humane way for the pig to be harvested ethically.
Mark Baker, one of our Hog Harvest instructors from Baker’s Green Acres, shares a story about how the Hog Harvest works in his family. The women don’t do the harvesting. However, they are a significant part in taking the hog from hoof to table.
The Hog Harvest class provides with step by step processing instructions and hands-on experience so you are ready to process a hog when you leave the class.
- Can children attend the Hog Processing course?
We’re happy to have your 14 years or older children join you in the hog processing class! The Anyone Can Farm Experience provides a discount for them to take the hog processing class with you.
We’ve found that younger children lose focus during the Hog Processing class and it can be dangerous for them because we are using sharp knives and are on a schedule. This is a great activity to include your younger children in at home, but the Hog Harvest class is not a good place for them.
- Will I be able to take home the meat we processed from the class?
Yes. The meat will all be available at the end of class at a discounted price for the class only.
- Do I need to bring my own knives?
All hog processing equipment needed for the hog butchering process will be provided for your use during the class. You do not need to bring anything along. We will have knives like the ones we use in the processing of the hog available for you to purchase at the class if you’d like to be well equipped when you get home to process your hogs.
- Do you have to already raise hogs before registering for the hog processing course? Will I benefit from the hog processing class?
Absolutely not! When you become a Certified Homestead Hog Processor, it will provide a level of knowledge for you to communicate with your hog farmer or butcher about the products you want.
The Hog Harvest class provides a great foundation for instruction for your finished pork products.You will have the skills necessary to harvest a hog in the field and then create your own favorite pork products, such as pork chops, pork steaks, ham, sausage, bacon, and lard.
Taking part in the Hog Harvest processes has many advantages.
Self-sufficiency and confidence in your ability is a priceless tool for your homestead toolbox. You will have the skills necessary to create your own favorite pork products, such as sausage, bacon, and beginner charcuterie. The Hog Harvest class provides a great foundation for self-sufficiency to create your own finished pork products, and the hands-on learning leads to confidence in your ability to “do the thing.”.
Another advantage of taking the Hog Processing course is you will spend a weekend at Baker’s Green Acres, a71 acre, northern Michigan working homestead. You will have the opportunity to experience how Mark and Jill Baker raise their Managalitsa Hogs and other livestock. You are encouraged to ask any homesteading questions you have so you’re prepared when you start your homestead or are on a growth trajectory to add pigs to your homestead. You get to immerse yourself in the farm family and enjoy watching how the Baker family work as a team. Lastly, you get to spend an intense weekend experience with like-minded class members to share ideas and experiences with. It’s a rich weekend on many levels!
- What book or books would you recommend for butchering?
Brian Polcyn & Michael Ruhlman Charcuterie
John Mettler Jr. Basic Butchering
Adam Danforth & Joel Salatin Butchering Poultry, Rabbit, Lamb, Goat, and Pork
See also Reader’s Digest Back to Basics
Enjoy the independence and security that comes with knowing how to raise and process chicken for your own table, along with the assurance that comes from having experienced the process hands-on. Anyone Can Farm!
This class will give you the confidence to know you “can-do” this farm “gateway” animal. If you want to produce the chicken your family eats, from roasted chicken to chicken nuggets and ground chicken (or turkey), this class will shorten your learning curve and save you time and money. From field to freezer, brooder to processing, you’ll walk through the process so you can go home and get started!
In this hands-on, on farm class you will:
- See various ways to start chicks and care for chicks in the brooder
- Move chickens on the pasture and experience how to raise pastured poultry with ease
- See exactly how our automatic watering system works
- Process at least 2 chickens, including scald, pluck, eviscerate, processing of organs and cutting up the chicken
- See how poultry fit into a whole farm regenerative system with a farm tour of Baker’s Green Acres
- This hands-on, on farm class will also cover:
- how to start your chicks and manage them as they grow,
- managing diseases and predation
- building a chicken tractor (mobile chicken pen).
- how to butcher chickens, including using the whole chicken (feet, organs, etc.) and creating various cuts and pastured poultry products.
- marketing and economics of pastured poultry
Enjoy the independence and security that comes with knowing how to raise and process chicken for your own table, along with the assurance that comes from having experienced the process hands-on. Anyone Can Farm! This class will give you the confidence to know you “can-do” this farm “gateway” animal. If you want to produce the chicken your family eats, from roasted chicken to chicken nuggets and ground chicken (or turkey), this class will shorten your learning curve and save you time and money. From field to freezer, brooder to processing, you’ll walk through the process so you can go home and get started!
Beef Butchering Class
The first day we’ll show you how to kill a grass-fed Hereford steer. You’ll help skin it, remove the organs, quarter, and hang it for aging (as much as you’re prepared to be involved). We’ll talk about safety and equipment as well as technique. When we get all that done, we’ll enjoy a dinner with the “offal” parts to experience how to enjoy the less familiar cuts of the beef. This is the part of every Anyone Can Farm Experience class that everyone loves: good food, good company, and the camaraderie of a hard job accomplished.
The second day starts at 9 a.m. with coffee. We’ll spend the day watching and doing to break the quarters into primals into cuts ready to package and freeze. We’ll enjoy a good lunch of, of course, beef. The animal we cut will be a steer we hung two or three weeks prior. We anticipate being done by late afternoon. You can take some of the beef you helped create home for a one time class discount.
About Our Services
HOG HARVEST WORKSHOP
CHARCUTERIE AND PORK PRESERVATION WORKSHOP
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