Let's talk "Hanging Weight"

When purchasing meat by the Whole or Half there is some lingo that must be understood by all parties involved. The following is a quick explanation of how bulk orders are placed and what customers should expect to get. 

There are three main terms we need to know; “Live Weight”, “Hanging Weight” and “Retail Weight”.  


  • Live Weight is the weight of the animal on the day of processing, before slaughter. We will use the example of a 100lb lamb. 


  • Hanging Weight is the weight of the carcass after it has been dressed out. This is after the unusable parts have been removed and before the final cuts for packaging. A 100lb lamb will have a Hanging Weight of approximately 50lbs. This is the weight that the price per lbs will be applied to. 


  • Retail Weight or Packing Weight is the amount of meat that is cut and packaged into roasts, steaks, chops, etc. For our example the Retail Weight comes out to approximately 32lbs. This is the total weight of finished meat the customer will take home.

The retail weight will vary depending on the different cutting options that are chosen by the customer. i.e selecting whole roasts vs chops or requesting additional ground meat in place of certain cuts. 

A note on price:  Our prices for whole and halves include the butcher’s fee. Not all farms will include this cost into their price per lbs and some have the customer pay the processor directly. The butcher’s fee could increase your total cost by 30% or more. Please make sure if you are comparing prices to know whether or not the butcher’s fee is included in the price/lbs. 

Dressing Percentage: This is the difference between the live weight and the hanging weight.


Live Weight (100lbs) – Dressing Percentage (50%) = Hanging Weight (50lbs)

Hanging Weight (50lbs) x Price per lbs ($6.95) = $347.50 Total Cost to you

Total Cost ($347.50) / Retail Weight (32lbs) = $10.86 price per lbs of packaged product. 

Typical Weights

*Lamb- Whole*

Live Weight: 90 – 110lbs

Hanging Weight: 45 - 55lbs

Retail Weight: 29 – 36lbs

*Pork- Whole*

Live Weight:

Hanging Weight: 

Retail Weight: 

If you have any questions on ordering a whole or half lamb/pork or questions about how bulk pricing works, please feel free to contact us at MyFarmer@GoodHopeFarmstead.com or 240-367-9676




Woodsboro, Maryland USA


Beef - 100% Grassfed

Chicken - Non-GMO

Pork - Non GMO

Lamb - Non-GMO

Mutton - Non-GMO

Duck Eggs - From Organic Fed Flock

  • Black Facebook Icon
  • Black Instagram Icon