In Porcisan we are really proud of being the fourth generation of pig traders. In 1986, we also established as a pig producer company but we should not forget our origins.
Livestock trading was a traditional job in Spain and in Murcia, our region. Pig traders should have certain character traits such as persuasion ability, «to have the gift of the gab» in colloquial slang, apprteciate livestock quality without showing any interest in them, calmness to avoid losing one´s temper.etc.
These special abilities in personality were difficult to be learnt and it was not easy to access to that world. This profession usually was held by certain families and it was passed on through generations as if it was an inheritance.
Pig traders were admired and respected and they also wore special characteristic clothes: black blouse, cap or hat and crook.
In weekly livestock markets such as in Murcia market held on Thursday they close their deals. Livestock farmers went to this market in order to sell their pigs. Buyer and seller knew beforehand prices and when they made a deal, seller often asked for a quantity that was greater than market price. pig trader enumerated animal defects and ordered a lower quantity, seller put up with it, etc.
Sometimes, pig trader moved away to make other deals, in the meantime, the seller got information about prices. Pig trader went back and continued bargaining until they achieved an accurate price. Some deals stopped up and another person had to intercede to get a final price. The deal finished with a handshake that had the effectiveness and legitimacy of an agreement, and it was impossible to back out of it. Pig traders knew each other and if one of them tried to go back on his word, he could definitely leave the trade.
The deal was celebrated with «el alboroque o convite» (Murcian typical word for «party») among all those who had taken part in it and was paid by the seller, and any scrounger always got into the act, too. They spoke about the deal issues and they finished gossiping about the things of the region.
Afterwards, they should take livestock to abbatoir or other markets to resale.
Pig traders went all round roads and paths and they were a realible information source about what was going on.
Image source: www.cutodivino.com