Timothy Woods
Published by Timothy Woods
Last Updated On: March 3, 2023

Kurobuta is known in the meat world as the "Wagyu" of the pork family. What makes this premium pork cut juicy, tender, and flavorful is the marbling and fat content of each cut.

For sure, you've heard about Berkshire pork, too.

So, what is Kurobuta pork? How is it different from Berkshire?

It's time to clear up the confusion between the two.

Is Kurobuta Pork The Same As Berkshire?

Berkshire pork meat comes from heritage breeds of Berkshire hogs. It is the same as Kurobuta pork, but not every Berkshire pig qualifies as Kurobuta grade meat.

In the United States, the American Berkshire Association only gives the Kurobuta designation to those purebred Berkshire hogs whose heritage can be traced back to that of English group roots.

Where Does Kurobuta Pork Come From?

meat on a chopping board

Kurobuta pork comes from Japan originally. The Japanese name, Kurobuta, means “black pig.” Many of you have probably heard of Wagyu beef, which also hails from Japan. Well, Kurobuta is the Wagyu of the pork industry. In Japan, every Berkshire pig is raised in or around the Kagoshima prefecture.

Many chefs claim that Japanese Kurobuta pork is regarded as the most flavorful due to their diet and free-range habitat. In the United States, this pork comes from Berkshire breeds raised by credible and authentic farms such as Snake River Farms.

They are raised in low-stress environments that keep them calm and regulate the pH in their bodies. The American Berkshire Association gave the first Kurobuta designation to a heritage breed named the “Ace of Spades.”

In England, most Berkshire breeds are raised and bred in Reading in Berkshire county. They follow a similar farming method as Japanese and American farmers. The first Berkshire pig pork meat was said to be enjoyed by Oliver Cromwell in 1640.

How Are Berkshire Pigs Raised?

Berkshire piglets are raised on family farms. They are free of any hormones or antibiotics. Farmers raise the Berkshire breed on pasture land and ensure every Berkshire pig gets a healthy serving of grain feed daily.

A Berkshire hog must be raised in small herds and given only the best care. They are raised and slaughtered in the most humane way possible to keep them calm while being fed. On some farms in Japan, the pigs are allowed to go for daily swims to maintain their activity levels.

How It Compares To Regular Pork

The main differences between regular and Berkshire pork are the taste, meat quality, tenderness, and fat. Regular pork comes from the American Landrace pigs versus the Japanese or English hogs.

The flavor of Berkshire meat is much more juicy, flavorful, and tender than that of other pigs. Kurobuta pork is set apart by its intense, thin stripes of soft, white fat that showcase the main difference between the two types. That's why it's known as the Wagyu or Kobe beef in the pork world.

What Are the Different Meat Cuts?

different meat cuts

The most popular meat cuts that you can get are pork chops, bacon, baby back ribs, and tenderloin. For the most part, the pork comes from a local farm in the US or England. You may not be able to find these flavorful meat cuts at your local food grocery store, so we recommend shopping at online food delivery services such as Crowd Cow or Snake River Farms website.

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How Expensive Is It?

Certified Berkshire pig meat is more expensive than regular pork. It usually cannot be found at a grocery store chain since it comes from heritage breeds. One pork chop from a grocery store will cost around $3 to $4 a pound, while one Berkshire heritage breeds pork chop will cost $10 to $14 per pound.

A rack of ribs from regular pigs will cost about $5 per pound, but one Berkshire hog rack from a Japan breed will cost around $20 per pound.

Kurobuta Pork - Final Thoughts

Kurobuta or Berkshire pork is one of the highest quality pork cuts available. The premium fat of these prized pigs is what makes the experience unique.

Now that we've settled the question on what exactly Kurobuta pork is, we're sure you'd like to get your hands on the tasty cut of this new pig in town.

Berkshire pork could be a good option for you to use to add some variety to your keto or carnivore diet. Many people think that steak is the only way to go, but this may be an option for your next barbecue or meal plan.

We recommend you check out several meat delivery websites that offer Kurobuta pork.

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