Pork is an incredibly versatile protein with options for roasting, slow-cooking, smoking and grilling—there’s something to suit all skill levels in the kitchen, and to satisfy even the fussiest of taste buds. From classic French-style Toulouse sausages to a family-size fennel, chilli, garlic and lemon stuffed porchetta carefully prepared by our butchers, another highlight of our offering is our award-winning rare breed ham and bacon.
This range of premium quality pork would not be possible without producers focussed on free-range, rare breed and small-scale farming. The maintenance of heritage breeds is incredibly important for biodiversity—many of the pig breeds featured in our cabinets would become extinct if it weren't for the work of Beachport Berkshires and Glen Eyrie Rare Breed Farms.
Katy Brown’s Glen Eyrie Rare Breed Farm has been supplying us with remarkable Victorian pork since the day we opened in 2015. Located near the small town of Corop in northern Victoria (about half an hour south of Echuca), Katy’s farm is home to a herd of Tamworth and other purebred pigs that pioneered the preservation of rare breed pork here in Australia.
With a long-held passion for conservation, Katy’s role in the survival of these breeds has been pivotal. With many cross-breeds of pig flooding the commercial market, without Katy’s hard work, the distinctive traits and characteristics of these unique species would likely have been lost.
Many of these older breeds of pig offer the special and sought after quality of carrying more fat, meaning they don’t need such thick skin to keep warm, which makes for the perfect crackling! The meat is a richer, darker colour than most of us are used to, and carries a delicious lingering and savoury flavour.
We love to shine a light on Katy Brown's rare breed Tamworth pork here at Meatsmith. Whether through the small goods featured in our charcuterie cabinet, our finish-at-home 12 hour pork shoulder or our range of sausages, Glen Eyrie Rare Breeds Farm delivers.
Another important rare breed is the Berkshire, now the main focus at Mark and Kate Wheal’s family-run farm near Beachport, on the Limestone Coast, South Australia. Berkshires are a black heritage breed that are slow-growing and suited to life outdoors. They thrive on grain grown on the farm and love digging in the dirt, lazing in lush green pastures and wallowing in mud on hot days.
Similar to the Tamworth, the Berkshire breed is well known for its increased level of intramuscular fat, which results in the juiciest and most flavoursome of meat. You’ll also find a balanced sweetness, coming from the pigs’ constant access to fresh pasture.
Since starting their pig farming journey around a decade ago, the Wheals have won awards for the quality and integrity of their Berkshire pigs. We’re huge supporters and proud to feature their top quality products in the cabinets here at Meatsmith.