The Berkshire hog breed dates back to the 1600’s, rumored to
have been first discovered by Sir Oliver Cromwell who prized Berkshire hogs for their superior meat quality. During this time,
the Berkshire was described as a reddish or sandy colored pig. Approximately 320 years ago, East Asian black
pigs were imported to England where they were crossed with the Berkshire
producing the black coat and 6 distinct spots that we see today. The British Royal family has been dedicated
to breeding Berkshire hogs and are known to have herds at their Windsor Castle
Not long after the creation of these black Berkshire hogs,
they were sent as a gift to modern day Okinawa.
The people of Okinawa were so impressed by the quality of the Berkshire
that they sent some north to Kyushu, now home to the world famous Kagoshima
Kurobuta pork and Kobe beef brands.
Within a century of its arrival, the Japanese acquired a preference to
the robust, tender, juicy pork and created feeding and animal management techniques
that brought out the best tasting pork ever.