Craig Dobbelyu wrote:
2nd litter- Sow: half Large Black half Yorkshire/ /Boar: Gloucestershire Old Spots (GOS)
4th litter-Sow: half Large Black half Yorkshire/ /Boar: GOS
These would be my first choices. The Duroc would be my last choice. Quite frankly, I would worry little about what breed and just get piglets, preferably from someone who raises them the way you want to raise yours. e.g., if you want to pasture then get pigs that come from pastured stock. Later after you have some experience you can think more about what breeds to get.
Craig Dobbelyu wrote:I'm looking for quality over quantity in the meat and don't mind having a little extra fat. They'll primarily be eating on pasture and garden greens. If I'm lucky, acorns in the fall.
What you feed them is the primary determination in how they will taste and how much fat they'll have. e.g., calories -> fat. Age of slaughter is also important in terms of marbling and fat. Breed does make a difference in taste but mostly on the extremes. In between it is the feed regime and how the pigs were raised that is the real issue.
Craig Dobbelyu wrote:What would be a good price for a pair of weened females?
We charge $200 for feeder weaner boars and $250 for gilts. See: http://SugarMtnFarm.com/piglets You'll find that prices vary greatly depending on sex, the quality of the animals, time of year and the geographic location so what is charged in one place at one time will vary considerably to another place and time.
I would strongly recommend not buying at auction - that's the place to find the lowest quality. Also don't buy the factory farm culls. They're cheap but then the cost of feeding, disease and losses makes up for that. The cost of a pig can roughly evenly be divided between the cost of the piglet, the cost of feed and the cost of processing. See:
Choices such as feeding conventional GMO grain vs organic grain, healthy pigs and doing the butchering yourself all greatly influence the costs, of course.