Buy free range. It’s been scientifically proven.
That’s all there is to it. This isn’t one of those articles where you have to read for 10 minutes before they tell you the answer to the headline. I’m here to spread a message, not gather ad revenue. Read on if you’re interested. Go out and buy some free range pork if you’re not.
So not only is free range kinder to the animals, it’s also objectively a better quality product. As if we needed any more reasons to by free range. You really have to wonder why it’s not available in the major supermarkets.
Even if big shops haven’t realised it, there are certainly farmers that recognise the merits of farming free range. Some farmers go as far as to line their transport trucks with mattresses in order to ensure that the pigs have the most comfortable, stress-free ride to the slaughterhouse. Happy until the bitter end.
Now I’ve been throwing out wild as yet unsubstantiated claims about better taste. How to prove that? Surely taste is entirely subjective. After all, there is the horrible practice in some Asian countries of torturing animals to death because they believe it improves the taste. Let’s look at this from a scientific perspective. The reason that free range ham, pork and bacon tastes so much better is due to glycogen that is present in the pig’s muscles. Muscle glycogen enhances the texture, flavour and colour of the meat. Hormones that get released due to fright and stress during a pig’s life cause a breakdown of muscle glycogen, lightening the colour of the meat as well as making it more acidic and less flavoursome.
The light coloured meat is more difficult for farmers to sell and is frequently discarded, meaning these animals suffered for nothing!
A pig raised on a natural diet, and given enough space for it to exercise will result in a better, more natural tasting meat. This is the sort of meat that people were enjoying for thousands of years before factory farming became the norm.
Judge for yourself. Buy some free range pork if you haven’t already and see what a difference it makes. I bet you won’t want to go back.
Check out the following links if you need more proof:
Image credit: Häggström, Mikael. “Medical gallery of Mikael Häggström 2014“. Wikiversity Journal of Medicine 1 (2).DOI:10.15347/wjm/2014.008. ISSN 20018762.