Theodore Williams began farming on his own in 1958, raising corn, soybeans and hogs. He inherited his land from his parents who farmed full-time. In fact, says Theodore, “It’s all they knew how to do.” Theodore worked for 31 years for a wholesale grocery distribution business, and maintained his hogs as a side business.
Hogs, Corn, Soybeans
Theodore has always raised his hogs outdoors on pasture and in woodlots. But, as a small-scale producer, he had limited market outlets. For many years, he sold his hogs to Lundy Packing, a nearby pork processing business. In the late 1990s, his neighbor told him about an opportunity to sell his hogs to Niman Ranch for a premium price. That lasted a few years and ultimately resulted in the formation of the NC Natural Hog Growers Association, of which Theodore is a founding member. Now Theodore sells all of his hogs through the Association to buyers like Firsthand Foods. He raises his own non-GMO grain (corn and soy) for feed for his hogs. And his operation is Animal Welfare Approved by A Greener World.
Now in retirement, his hogs keep him grounded and connected. Theodore has two children, neither of whom are interested in farming. His wife has passed away and so he’s decided that when he is no longer physically able, Theodore will pass on his hog operation to his brother Charles. We’re glad to know he has a plan his important and unique legacy.