Snap, crackle, pork!

By James Bennett

The smell of sizzling bacon is enough to get anyone out of bed on a Saturday morning.

Saturday, August 31, marks International Bacon Day — the most underrated day of the year.

One farm certainly celebrating is Goulburn Valley Pork, run by Darren and Sharon Young.

``Because of International Bacon Day, hopefully our sales go up,'' Mr Young said.

``I would definitely encourage people to eat some bacon at every meal.

``My preference of bacon is a little bit under crispy with eggs and sausages.''

Situated on more than 40ha in Harston this pig farm breeds some of the best pasture-raised pork in the region.

The farm prides itself on being 100 per cent Australian, and there are about 210 pigs running around on the ex-dairy farm.

"A lot of people are finding it hard to eat real Australian bacon," Mr Young said.

"You go to the supermarket and it's nine per cent Australian, which would just be the pickling juice.

"We call it pasture-raised because free-range has been robbed by industry."

Goulburn Valley Pork doesn't just specialise in bacon; it produces all cuts of pork.

"My favourite cut has to be a roast pork," Mr Young said.

"You can't go wrong with a nice bit of roast pork and crackling."

The pigs are usually sent to the abattoir about five months old, weighing about 85kg.

Mr Young said his pigs grew quickly and had a good conversion rate from feed to body weight.

The Youngs moved to the region about four years ago to run the pig farm.

Farming isn't their full-time profession; Mr Young is an electrician and Mrs Young is an accountant. The couple hires farm hands to help.

"We're doing something on the side which was always our intention," Mr Young said.

"It has been hard, particularly with money, but certainly worth it."

The pigs are friendly and easy to maintain. Mr Young said knowing the pigs' personalities helped when tending to them.

The Youngs are a constant feature at farmers' markets across the state, which is where they generate most of their business.

"Furthest west we travel is Cohuna, furthest east is Mansfield, we go down to Melbourne regularly. We also go to local farmers' markets such as Violet Town, Nagambie, Benalla and Shepparton."