Berkshire Pig: The Rare Breed in the UK

The Berkshire pig is an English breed product of the crossing of Chinese, Celtic and Neapolitan races whose result was a rough-looking animal with a very developed anterior third, short and shallow members. The color varies from brown to reddish-brown with black males. Later it improved and acquired its present appearance.

The Berkshire pig is a breed highly prized by farmers as one of its characteristics in the willingness to fatten and its great precocity. The Berkshire pig is a British breed of pig. It originated in the English county Berkshire, for which it is named. The Berkshire has been bred to be largely black with some white on the snout, lower legs and tip of tail.

Berkshire Pig

Characteristics of Berkshire Pig

The Berkshire pig color is Black with six white dots (on the muzzle, tail, and one on each leg) with small, stiff ears. It is a rustic pig of precocious maturity that has spread all over the world. It is of regular proliferation and its meat is of good quality. Therefore the Berkshire breed has taken a leading role in responding to the need to be a more meaty pig, which integrates well for the American market.

In addition, in recent years the Berkshire breed has experienced a tremendous rise in quality, popularity, quantity, and commercial acceptance. The Berkshire pig is often used to upgrade the vigor of a commercial herd since the breed is not closely related to most other breeds because the Berkshire breed is characteristically very robust pigs with large meat production. This characteristic Makes it useful so that this breed can be crossed with others and improve its genetics.

Therefore the head of this species is of concave profile:

  • Medium wide.
  • Medium erect ears leaning forward.
  • Snout short and wide.
  • Short and arched neck.
  • Deep chest, flat pallets.
  • Broad and slightly arched back.
  • Deep and flat ribs, inclined rump and straight and strong extremities.
  • The skin is black, just like the hair.
  • Has white spots on the distal extremities, snout, and tip of the tail.

Productive Parameters:

  • The female can weigh 350 kg and males 400 kg approximately.
  • The number of piglets per litter is 7 – 10 on average.
  • Channel performance is 80%.
  • Disadvantages: Poor maternal ability.


First, a good diet for the Berkshire breed should include essential nutritional components like water, energy, protein, minerals, and vitamins. The pigs have a high feed conversion which is 3.5 kg of feed per kilogram of weight gained, which means that they are good at assimilating what they eat. Lack of energy foods slows feed conversion and slows growth. Instead, an excess produces too much fat, which can cause temporary infertility.

As for proteins, it is necessary to consider not only quantity but quality. A deficiency of proteins in quantity or quality causes problems of appetite and abnormalities in hair and skin, particularly in young animals. Feeding pigs require another series of minerals, which are fundamental among them calcium, phosphorus, chlorine, and sodium. Pigs are generally sensitive to the deficiency of almost all vitamins. 


The Berkshire pig It is a double-purpose breed, the farmers produce it for its meat as it is excellent flavor, and in addition that it can be extracted from a deep ham, also in Japan is known as kurobuta. In the same way, this race also occurs for being a race that can be crossed with other races.  You May Also Like To Read Pig farming.

Special Feature

  • Its coat is usually black with some white spots or matting.
  • Concave profile and erect medium ears.
  • Fast growth.
  • They are very early animals.
  • They produce excellent quality meat.
  • Low prolificacy.
  • A race of good constitution.
  • Pig of good adaptability to grazing and to everything in general.
  • Easy handling and maintenance.
  • Quality meat production in a short time.
  • Accustomed to living outdoors even in difficult climatic conditions.
  • Poor maternal ability (average piglets per litter from 6 to 9).
  • Precociousness in its treatment (between 60 and 70 kilos in 24 weeks).

Pig Profile

Pig nameBerkshire Pig
Other NameAny
Pig PurposeFor his meat, and to cross with other races
Coat colorReddish with spots, blond and black
Weight350 to 400 kg
Climate ToleranceAll Climates
Country of OriginEngland


If you’ve made it this far, thank you so much for reading! We hope that our guide has helped give you the information to make an educated decision about which type of pig breed is best suited for your needs. Good luck with your search and don’t hesitate to reach out if we can be of any help in answering questions or providing guidance on what’s next.

As A Reference: Wikipedia

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