The mention of this farm animal is an insult to some. And yes, it can be used in that manner. Like many words — English has given it many connotations through the years.
Our neighbor called them “mortgage lifters” for their ability in a good year to bring the farmer cash in a relatively short amount of time.
The market is strong for them. Americans do love their bacon, ham, and pork chops. Six months from birth to market at 200 pounds is what my father aimed for. Yes, the cash was welcome. And paid bills — for farmers have plenty of those.