- George Harrison – vocal, acoustic guitar, arrangements
- John Lennon – backing vocal, tape effects, arrangements
- Paul McCartney – backing vocal, bass
- Ringo Starr – tambourine
- George Martin – string arrangements
- Chris Thomas – harpsichord
George Harrison wrote Piggies as a social commentary about greed and cynicism in the business world and about and the indifference of the well-to-do towards the life struggles of others. He started on it in 1966, about the time he also wrote Taxman, which also had the tone of a pamphleteer lamenting greed and other social ills. Because "pig" was a slang term for policeman in the 1960's, many thought the song was a rant against the police, but the term is not used in that way; rather, it refers to those who have porcine appetites for material things.
Piggies was released on the double album, The Beatles (aka The White Album). George clearly had fun with this song. A very "proper" harpsichord and string quartet suddenly breaks into a blues riff. Harrison's mother, Louise, contributed the line, "What they need's a good whacking." John Lennon provided "clutching knives and forks to eat their bacon." Lennon's other contribution to the song was the creation of the tape loop of pig noises heard in the song. Piggies was placed after Blackbird and before Rocky Raccoon on The White Album, creating a sequence of three songs with animals in their titles. Perhaps because Harrison clearly speaks from a Hyde Park soapbox in this song, critics did not treat it kindly. Ian MacDonald called it "an embarrassing blot" on Harrison's songwriting record.
Piggies was not recorded until 1968. A demo was made in Harrison's home studio in May. This version can be heard on Anthology 3. The recording for EMI began at Abbey Road on September 19, 1968 with producer Chris Thomas (George Martin's second in command) playing the harpsichord. Eleven takes of the rhythm track were made, and on September 20 Harrison finished his lead vocals. Lennon added the tape loops of pig noises. On October 10 a string octet recorded an accompaniment worked out by George Martin to complete the piece. This version left out one of the verses, which Harrison added back in whenever he performed the song live. His Live in Japan album contains the complete set of lyrics.