Animal Welfare Approved

North Carolina Hog Growers Association Members to All Become Animal Welfare Approved


In 2007, a group of hog farmers banded together to pool their resources and build markets for their high-quality pork products and the North Carolina Natural Hog Growers Association was born. Currently made up of 25 hog farmers, the group decided to make being Animal Welfare Approved a centerpiece of their production practices.

“The Animal Welfare Approved label tells our retailers and customers that our hogs are raised outdoors, on pasture, with high welfare standards,” said group president Jeremiah Jones (pictured at right with wife, Jessica) of Beulaville, North Carolina, whose sells his pork under the his private label Grassroots Pork Company. “We find that people want to know how we manage our animals.”

North Carolina Natural Hog Growers Association members are proud of their farms and their product. The members run the gamut from North Carolina farmer Albert Jones, who grew up on his family’s farm and has been raising pigs the traditional way since boyhood, adjonesprofileto Mike Jones (below), who worked in large hog confinement operations, an experience that caused him to leave pig farming for many years, until he founded MAE Farm. None of the farmers are related and being named Jones is not a NC Natural Hog Growers membership requirement. “However, it can make for some interesting meetings,” said Albert Jones, the group’s vice president (pictured at right).

North Carolina Natural Hog Growers Association pork is currently sold at local farmers markets, direct from the farmers and in retail stores throughout North Carolina. A database of Animal Welfare Approved farmers and the outlets carrying their products can be found at

4 thoughts on “North Carolina Hog Growers Association Members to All Become Animal Welfare Approved

  1. Penny says:

    although I am vegan, I applaud these guys getting together to do the right thing. My husband and son both eat meat and this gives them even more of a choice. I cannot bring myself to buy any meat but I do ask that when they do, they find people like this to purchase from. This is all I ever wanted really. I knew we could do better. Thank you!

  2. susie middleton says:

    This is so awesome. Congratulations to these brave folks who are doing this in a state known for its factory farms. change can happen!

  3. kp says:

    congratulations, and thank you! I hope to be able to try some of your pork the next time I’m in NC.

  4. Portia McCracken says:

    I have been having a serious conflict between my love of meat (especially pork) and my concern for the welfare of farm and food animals. I am tremendously relieved to learn of the North Carolina Natural Hog Growers Association. Now I know I can comfortably eat their product, confident in the knowledge that their animals lived a good, natural life and were given a clean death. This is very important to me.

    Thank you, Animal Welfare Approved and NC Natural Hog Growers Association. I’m thrilled to learn about your fine work.

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