Here on Vernal Vibe Rise, we recognize that pigs are intelligent, friendly, and curious animals–and we treat them as such. Our Gloucestershire Old Spots pigs are registered with Gloucestershire Old Spots of America (GOSA); we cull hard and only register pigs that meet GOSA breed standards. We work diligently to keep our GOS genetics fresh and true to breed characteristics; this goal has taken us to many parts of the country and allowed us to interact with a grand variety of farmers.
VVR GOS swine are raised outside on organic pasture and wooded land using intensive rotational grazing methods. We do not use antibiotics, synthetics, or any other unnatural methods because we believe that the pigs stay stronger without such chemicals. Our Gloucestershire Old Spots are healthy and happy.
We offer Gloucestershire Old Spots for sale, including breeding stock, feeder pigs, and USDA-inspected pork (processed at an Animal Welfare Approved facility) but the cut.
We currently offer two lines of rare BLACK group GOS breeding stock, sired by a very rare blue group boar.
The website of the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy states, “Gloucestershire (pronounced Glostersheer) pigs were selected as excellent foragers and grazers. The pigs are thrifty, able to make a living from pasture and agricultural by products, such as whey from cheese making, windfall apples in orchards, and the residue from pressing cider. These easy keeping qualities gave Gloucestershire Old Spots the nicknames “cottage pig” and “orchard pig.” British folklore claims the large black spots are bruises caused by the apples falling onto them as they foraged the orchard floors for food.
“Gloucestershire Old Spots pigs were imported to the United States during the 1900s, and they made genetic contributions to several American breeds, especially the American Spot and the Chester White. The breed never became numerous in the United States, however, and was practically extinct by the 1990s. In 1995, Kelmscott Farm Foundation of Lincolnville, Maine, organized an importation of twenty Gloucestershire piglets to reestablish the purebred population in America. A breed society was founded, and the number of animals is increasing. As of 2009, there are about less than 1000 Gloucestershire Old Spots in Great Britain and fewer than 200 breeding animals in the US. The breed notably benefits from continued support of the British Royal Family who favors pork from these pigs for their table.
“The Gloucestershire Old Spots pig is known for its docility, intelligence, and prolificacy. Boars reach a mature weight of 600 lbs (136 kg) and sows 500 lbs (125 kg). The pigs are white with clearly defined black (not blue) spots. There must be at least one spot on the body to be accepted in the registry. The breed’s maternal skills make it able to raise large litters of piglets on pasture. Its disposition and self‑sufficiency should make it attractive for farmers raising pasture pigs and those who want to add pigs to diversified operations.”
Check out Gloucestershire Old Spots Pig Breeders Club for UK-oriented GOS information and breed history.
Explore the Gloucestershire Old Spots of America website for information on breed characteristics, history, and color-wheel breeding suggestions.