A Wide Variety of Pork Products

One pig produces many different pork products. What kind of meat you have depends on where it came from on the pig. Bacon comes from the belly. Ham comes from the rear end. Pork loin and pork chops come from the muscle running along the pig’s back and shoulder. Ribs come from—the ribs!

But pigs have other uses too. Some of the insulin used to treat diabetes comes from pigs. Parts of pigs can be used for replacement heart valves. Gelatin from pigs is used in makeup, pill capsules, and even marshmallows!

However, the primary use for pigs is for meat. Pork is both a good source of protein and also provides several important vitamins and minerals. A three-ounce serving of pork is an excellent source of thiamin, niacin, and vitamin B6. It is also a good source of riboflavin, zinc, and potassium.

Pork has long had a reputation for being a “fatty” meat. That was once true, but not as much anymore. Today, pork is 16% leaner than it used to be because of advancements in nutrition and genetics. Today’s pork tenderloin is as lean as a boneless, skinless chicken breast.