The Oxford Sandy and Black pig is a rare British pig breed that is a legacy of the farming traditions of the historical regions of Central England. Originating in the area around Oxfordshire, it has become a prized and popular breed for both its heritage and culinary purposes. The breed is considered a “dual-purpose” breed, capable of producing both pork and bacon.

The Oxford Sandy and Black pig is a medium-sized breed with an upright stance and wide body. They are a long-legged breed that is well-suited to outdoor production systems and can thrive in a variety of climates. The breed is typically black with sandy areas, hence the name ‘Sandy and Black’, but individuals may also be reddish or spotted. Their ears are small and erect, their snouts long and their tails curved.

The Oxford Sandy and Black pig is known for its hardiness, strong constitution and good mothering abilities. They are a docile breed that is relatively easy to handle, and does well in groups. The breed has a fast growth rate and can attain market weight quickly. The breed is also known for its flavorful meat which is prized for its marbling. They are also relatively economical to maintain due to their hardy nature.

The breed is considered at risk due to its declining population, caused by the rise of industrialized factory farming. They are listed as a “vulnerable native breed” by The Livestock Conservancy, and conservation efforts are underway to help this heritage breed survive and thrive.

In summary, the Oxford Sandy and Black pig is an ancient British breed that is valued for its hardiness, dual-purpose capabilities, fast growth rate, and flavorful meat. It is currently a vulnerable breed whose population is in decline due to factory farming, and conservation efforts are underway to save this heritage breed.