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Britannic Rare Breeds aim to promote all traditional native farmed livestock, in particular rare breeds and where possible make them easily obtainable.

Native breeds form a valuable part of our cultural heritage and their continued existence and genetic diversity is important to provide opportunities and options for both commercial and domestic circumstances in the future.
Rare breeds are rare because smallholders are rare, in truth we should all do our bit to grow our own and it is in this domestic, low intensity and small scale environment that so many traditional breeds flourish where a dependant commercial strain would not.

A great array of traditional breeds still exist and it is among this great diversity that you are likely to find a breed or variety ideally suited to your own environment, requirements and circumstances.

Featured Breed - Berkshire pig

The Berkshire was the first British breed to be brought up to a high standard of perfection.  Up to 1790 the pig was large and black, black and white or reddish-brown with black spots. Described at the time by Richardson as being ‘Long and crooked-snouted, the muzzle turning upwards. The ears were large, heavy and inclined to be pendulous; the body long and thick, but not deep’.  From around this time the Chinese or Siamese pigs were mated with these Berkshire’s to create an early maturing shorter bodied pig set higher on the legs. The majority of this early improvement was carried out after 1790 in Leicestershire and Staffordshire. The resulting pigs were of a reddish-brown colour with brown or black spots. Whether the Tamworth was involved, is unknown. Prior to or at the same time to this improvement Lord Barrington until his death in 1829 was a key figure in the improvement of the Berkshire. It is not known which of the Chinese, Siamese or Neopolitan breeds were used to improve the Berkshire, although it was certainly one of them that created the black pig with white tips that we know today. The new Berkshire became a very popular breed and was widely exported from the late 18th, becoming influential in the creation of foreign pig breeds.

Read more about the Berkshire here

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