As the name indicates wild hog is a wild animal, it usually lives in jungles and bushy places while pork is raised commercially in farms. Wild hog meat has much fewer fats and is leaner as compared to pork, this is the reason hog meat is cooked quickly as compared to commercially raised pork. All those animals which roam around have more muscular movements as compared to those animals which remain inside, a healthier and energetic lifestyle can make animals more strong and muscular while a sedentary lifestyle can have a detrimental effect on the musculature, due to those muscular movements; the taste of the meat gets more and more rich and flavorful. Pork is raised merely on grains, besides this they are also given supplements, antibiotics, and hormones that are not good for the meat and eventually human beings. That’s why wild hog meat is considered healthier than a commercially raised pig.
Is it difficult to get wild hog meat for chefs?
Many states have rules and regulations regarding obtaining meat because it must be slaughtered under inspection, therefore chefs find it much trickier to obtain a slice of hunted wild hog meat because it is not slaughtered and dressed according to the regulations, and instead it is hunted by the hunters. So you may find it difficult to search wild hog steaks or shoulder roasts on the menu list of most of the restaurants.
Differences between wild hog and pork meat:
The only difference between both the meats is the presence of steroids, hormones, and antibiotics in pork meat as compared to wild hog meat. These artificial supplements can destroy the natural taste and aroma of the meat that’s why hog meat appears to be more dark, rich, and tasty and healthier. Wild hogs have naturally enhanced and powerful musculature because of free-roaming and straying while pigs remain inside and have less muscle and body movements, the size of their muscles is increased by giving steroids and growth hormones.
Use of antibiotics:
For the last 65 years antibiotics have been used to eliminate different diseases from livestock. Antibiotics are also used in swine production to keep them safe from bacteria. Antibiotics have same therapeutic effects on livestock animals which they have on human beings in terms of controlling pathogenic bacteria, but the drawback of using antibiotics is that they not only kill living but nonliving cells as well, therefore, disrupting the functions of normal flora which lives in the gut of livestock to promote digestive health.
Many swine producers use antibiotics only to prevent and control the diseases according to the regulations set by the National Pork Hogd (NPB), but it is not possible to eliminate the use of antibiotics. Many swine producers now days are using vaccines as compared to antibiotics. The use of antibiotics in pigs has to lead to the production of decreased quality meat.
Use of hormones in pigs:
Various kind of hormones are used in swine production to enhance their growth and metabolism for better yield, these hormones sometimes have detrimental effects and can also lower the quality of meat obtained through pork. Those hormones which act on ovaries should be avoided because it can disturb the oestrus cycle and pregnancy stages of female pork hence leading to decreased production of piglets. Some of the commonly used hormones in pigs are as follows:
Prostaglandins cause the regression of corpus luteum, a substance produced during the ovulation cycle of female pork. The use of prostaglandins has increased the rates of abortions.
Prostaglandins are used to resolve any womb infection, increase the fertility, to reduce inflammation of endometrium (middle layer of the uterus)
Oxytocin is released from anterior pituitary gland responsible for letting down of mil in mammals and contraction of the uterus. Commercially prepared Oxytocin is given to female pigs to promote the flow of milk.
Growth hormones are also given to commercial pork to artificially enhance the size of their musculature to look attractive.
All those hormones which are used in the swine industry are responsible for degrading the quality of meat as well as its taste.
Use of artificial supplements:
Pork is commercially raised usually on farms therefore they are given all essential and non-essential nutrients to keep them healthy, these artificial supplements include zinc, iron, calcium, magnesium, copper, chromium, and cobalt. Iron is usually given to maintain the hemoglobin requirements of blood in the same way other nutrients have their functions in the body. These artificial supplements can reduce the quality and taste of meat.
The drawback of eating raw pork:
Although wild hog meat is much beneficial regarding a health point of view as compared to pork due to the reasons discussed above both the meats would be detrimental if you don’t cook properly. Undercook meat can cause food poisoning and when not taken seriously can prove to be fatal. Meat should be cooked properly with the internal temperature of meat reaching up to 160 F. Trichinosis is a kind of food poisoning that is caused by eating raw or undercooked pork.
Trichinosis is also known as trichinellosis, the meat of pork contains larvae of special worms known as trichinella spiralis. When we don’t cook the meat properly, larvae are not destroyed and when eaten by human beings the mature worms now reside in the tissues and muscles.
- High-grade fever
- Bloating and abdominal pain
- Swelling in the eyes
- Muscular pain
- Irritation and swelling of eyes
- Thirst and tiredness
Symptoms in severe cases:
- Pericarditis (inflammation of heart muscles)
- Shortness of breath
Symptoms start to appear after some days of consuming raw meat. Mild cases usually resolve by themselves without the need for hospitalization but severe cases can cause severe illness and can prove to be fatal.
Can wild hogs infect you?
All wild hogs are not carriers of diseases but some of them can be already infected with various diseases before coming in contact with you. There is a disease called Swine brucellosis which occurs after physical contact with infected wild hog. If you come in contact with a hog, bacteria can enter through your nose, mouth, and eyes. Bacteria responsible for this disease reside in body fluids of hog. You should be properly covered if you are going in an area having more population of hogs or to those places where chances of encountering a hog are high. Symptoms may appear after weeks to months of contact with infected hog. You can feel chills, rigors, pain joints, headache, and backache. The good news is this disease can be treated with antibiotics and symptoms can disappear after 2-3 weeks.
Can the age of wild hog affect the quality of meat?
The answer to this question would surely be YES because older the hog, more the disease it will carry as compared to younger ones, so if you have hunted an older hog the chances of their disease carriage are double as compared to younger ones.
Can hog meal spoil after some days?
Warm and humid weather is responsible for the spoiling of meat in many cases, whether its chicken, fish, beef or pork, the temperature must be kept low to prevent the spread of bacteria in meat. So after cutting the hog meat it must be refrigerated if you don’t want to spoil the quality. Emission of bad odor can be a good indication of spoiling. Now the question arises for how long you could keep the hog meat in the refrigerator, the answer would be 1-2 days if it’s not cooked and 3-4 days if it is cooked properly. Growth of bacteria is not stopped completely but usually slows down
If you are keeping the meat in the freezer then you can be tension free up to six months if you have wrapped the meat properly. These rules are not only applicable to hog meat only but to all red and white meats.
We have discussed all the beneficial effects of wild hog meat as compared to pork, and we have concluded that wild hog is healthier as compared to pork due to many reasons. Wild hog is a wild animal that keeps roaming in the muddy and bushy places and is free of any kind of artificial supplements, vaccines, steroids, and hormones. Growth hormones are given to enhance the size of pork so it may look attractive while antibiotics are given to keep them healthy and safe from infectious diseases, nutrients and minerals are given for proper functioning of all systems of the body, while pork is usually fed on grains and these kinds of supplements, sometimes the overdose of these artificial things can reduce the quality of meat, that is why wild hog meat appears to be more juicy, delicious, dark and healthy. If you don’t want to suffer from any foodborne illness you must cook the meat properly whether it is of wild hog or pork because heat can destroy the bacteria and worms inside the meat. Undercooked or raw meat can make you ill by disturbing your stomach.