April 7, 2014

BAN FOIE GRAS:WORLD NO.1 GORGEOUS AND HORRIBLE FOOD


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                                                 France 
                  BAN FOIE GRAS
                      WORLD NO.1 GORGEOUS AND HORRIBLE FOOD  
                                                                               ART by Keiko Olds


Foie gras is a popular and well-known delicacy in French cuisine. Its flavor is described as rich, buttery, and delicate, unlike that of an ordinary duck or goose liver. Foie gras is sold whole, or is prepared into mousse, parfait, or pâté (the lowest quality), and may also be served as an accompaniment to another food item, such as steak. French law states that "Foie gras belongs to the protected cultural and gastronomical heritage of France.

The technique of gavage dates as far back as 2500 BC, when the ancient Egyptians began keeping birds for food and deliberately fattened the birds through force-feeding.[5] Today, France is by far the largest producer and consumer of foie gras, though it is produced and consumed worldwide, particularly in other European nations, the United States, and China.


★★PETITION★★
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★WE DEMAND NOW ALL FOIE GRAS PRODUCTIONS STOP IMMEDIATELY  

★Amazon: Stop Torturing Ducks for Foie Gras 

★Ban Foie-Gras

★Stop the Sale of Foie Gras at Selfridges Petition 

★Urge Foie Gras Pimps to Ditch Diseased Livers!

★Sign the Manifesto

★The Last Straw: No More Foie Gras! - The Animal Rescue Site 

★Shocking Footage Exposes Cruelty and Abuse on Farms Supplying Fortnum & Mason Foie Gras Distributor

★Stop Cruelty to Ducks by Banning Foie Gras 

★Please Ban Foie Gras!! 

★Ban trade of foiegras in the UK - e-petitions 

★SIGN OUR PETITION TO KEEP FOIE GRAS LEGAL IN CALIFORNIA!

★Stop Cruelty to Ducks by Banning Foie Gras

★Ban foie-gras - sign the petition! | Viva! 

★Ban the Use and Production of Foie Gras in Canada

★Ban The Production and Importation of Foie Gras in Europe

★Wisconsin Foie Gras

★Speak Out Against Foie Gras

★BAN FOIE GRAS IN MONTREAL - BANNISSONS LE FOIE GRAS À MONTRÉAL

★Please Ban Foie Gras!! http://inagist.com/all/452664178143023104/

★Stop Torturing Ducks for Foie Gras

★Urge Foie Gras Pimps to Ditch Diseased Livers!

★Bistro Bobette Foie Gras Protest + Petition Delivery

★WE DEMAND NOW ALL FOIE GRAS PRODUCTIONS STOP IMMEDIATELY

★Irish Restaurants: Stop Serving Cruel Foie Gras

★Chef Gordon Ramsay: Swear Off Foie Gras!

★Bistro Bobette: Remove cruel foie gras from your menu

★K Club - Take Foie Gras off the menu

★Gobierno de México: Prohibición del Foie Gras en México

★Annise D. Parker, Mayor, City of Houston: Ban the sale of foie gras in Houston city limits

★Refrain from stocking and selling foie gras

★Miss Kitty's Saloon - Please Stop Selling CRUEL FOIE GRAS

★Fortnum and Mason London: Stop selling Foie Gras

★The Chase Restaurant in Toronto and owner/management: Stop serving foie gras at your restaurant

★Stop selling cruel foie gras

★Parlamento europeo: STOP alla produzione di FOIE GRAS ("fegato grasso")

★Fois Gras illegal now! Ducks and geese feel pain and suffer, yet to produce Foie Gras. A goose having a feeding pipe forced down its throat.

★NO "FOIE GRAS"! 

★Norway: Ban Foie Gras! 

★Ban Force Feeding Ducks  in New York(Foie...

★Boycott foie gras 

★Ban the trade of foie gras in the UK

★BAN FOIE GRAS IN GEORGIA! 

★Ask Le Cordon Bleu London not... 

★NO MORE FOIE GRAS AND KFC CHICKEN 

★Update #1 Stop Abusing Ducks... 

★Update #2 Stop Abusing Ducks... 

★PROHIBICION FOIE GRAS 

★Foie Gras- Stop the force feeding!

★Pledge not to eat Foie Gras... 

★Pour l'Abolition du titre "GASTRONOMIE" au foie gras !



 
What is foie gras?

On the left: a foie gras liver.  On the right: a normal liver.  (Photo courtesy PETA.Permission to use freely)
Foie gras – French for “fatty liver” – is the diseased and enlarged liver of a duck or goose, produced through force feeding.
The Animal Protection & Rescue League has investigated all three US foie gras farms and several in France and found rampant cruelty to be the norm. Compassion Over Killing sent an investigator to the largest US farm, Hudson Valley Foie Gras, on a guided tour with a hidden camera and also witnessed the standard cruelty that is required for foie gras production.









Two to three times a day, a worker grabs each bird, shoves a long, thick metal tube all the way down his throat, and an air pump shoots up to two pounds of corn mush into his esophagus.  The industry always refers to the dry weight of the feed, which is about one pound per feeding.  Adding oil and water doubles this weight, making it 20-30% of the bird’s healthy body weight.  Picture 30 one pound boxes of dry pasta and then add water. This is proportionally how much a 150 pound human would be force fed using this formula.
A duck’s liver naturally weighs around 50 grams. However, to qualify as foie gras, the industry’s own regulations require ducks’ livers to weigh an absolute minimum of 300 grams.
The vast amounts of feed pumped down the ducks’ throats causes enormous internal pressure, and the pipe sometimes punctures the esophagus, causing many to die from choking on the blood that fills their lungs. Some birds literally burst, choke to death on their own vomit, or become so weak that they are unable to fend off rats from eating them alive (click to see footage from Sonoma Foie gras–requires Windows Media Player). Other ducks die a slow, painful, and premature death by suffocation from inhalation of regurgitated feed. In fact, because of the massive toll taken on the birds during the force-feeding process, the average pre-slaughter mortality rate is up to twenty times higher than on other duck factory farms, according to the European Union’s Scientific Report on the subject.
According to the ASPCA, ”The birds’ livers become so enlarged…that according to documentation by veterinarians, the animals must experience unspeakable pain and suffering. Birds have literally exploded from these forced feedings. The results of necropsies on dead birds that have been force-fed reveal ruptured livers, throat damage, esophageal trauma, and food spilling from the dead animals’ throats and out of their nostrils.”
In addition to enduring force-feeding, the birds also suffer the same neglectful and abusive treatment of other factory-farmed animals: overcrowding, mutilations (the ends of their beaks are cut off), having all their natural instincts and desires–such as interacting in social groups, mating freely, keeping themselves clean, nurturing their young, exploring their surroundings–thwarted, and eventually being sent to a violent death by slaughter. Throughout the weeks of force-feeding, the birds are kept in either a group pen or an individual cage with only wire or plastic-mesh floors to stand and sleep on.
To make matters worse, the ducks and geese are housed without access to swimming water even though ducks need to be able to immerse themselves in water to remain healthy. Access to water on these farms is so limited that the ducks cannot adequately clean their nostrils and eyes, which can lead to blindness.
This is all for an overpriced, unhealthy appetizer that anyone can do without.  Please navigate this site to learn more about this issue and what you can do to end this barbaric practice.





     Country Production (tons, 2005) % of total
1. France 18,450[32] 78.5%
2. Hungary 1,920[32] 8.2%
3. Bulgaria 1,500[32] 6.4%
4. United States 340 (2003)[33] 1.4%
5. Canada 200 (2005)[34] 0.9%
6. China 150[32] 0.6%

                 Others 940 4.0%

                 Total 23,500[32] 100%

France is the leading producer and consumer of duck and goose foie gras. In 2005, the country produced 18,450 tonnes of foie gras (78.5% of the world's estimated total production of 23,500 tonnes) of which 96% was duck liver and the rest goose liver. Total French consumption of foie gras was 19,000 tonnes in 2005.  Approximately 30,000 people are members of the French foie gras industry, with 90% of them residing in the Périgord (Dordogne), the Aquitaine régions in the southwest, and Alsace. The European Union recognizes the foie gras produced according to traditional farming methods (label rouge) in southwestern France with a geographical indication of provenance.

Hungary is the world's second-largest foie gras (libamáj) producer and the largest exporter (1,920 tonnes in 2005). France is the principal market for Hungarian foie gras; mainly exported raw. Approximately 30,000 Hungarian goose farmers are dependent on the foie gras industry. French food companies spice, process, and cook the foie gras so it may be sold as a French product in its domestic and export markets.

Bulgaria produced 1,500 tons of foie gras in 2005 The United States and Canada also have a thriving foie gras industry. The demand for foie gras in the Far East is such that China has become a sizeable producer. Madagascar is a small but rapidly growing producer of high quality foie gras
The feed is administered using a funnel fitted with a long tube (20–30 cm long), which forces the feed into the animal's esophagus; if an auger is used, the feeding takes about 45 to 60 seconds. Modern systems usually use a tube fed by a pneumatic pump fed via a slit cut in the esophagus; with such a system the operation time per duck takes about 2 to 3 seconds. During feeding, efforts are made to avoid damaging the bird's esophagus, which could cause injury or death, although researchers have found evidence of inflammation of the walls of the proventriculus after the first session of force-feeding.[48] There is also indication of inflammation of the esophagus in the later stages of fattening. Several studies have also demonstrated that mortality rates can be significantly elevated during the gavage period.
Filmed in 2012 in South-West France.
                                     Foie gras du Sud-Ouest, enquête de L214
                                           

U.S. foie gras industry ducking controversy↑

American farms that force-feed ducks to keep up with demand of the liver dish are coming under fire.
                



                             ■Countries and regions where the production of Foie Gras is banned
                             ■Mainly countries and regions producing Foie Gras



  SONOMA ARTISTAN FOIE GRAS       http://www.artisanfoiegras.com

FOIE GRAS: AN OLD DELICACY, AN OLD GUILT 

http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/culture/2012/06/foie-gras.html

◎California Chefs Seek Repeal Of Looming Foie Gras Ban

                                                                       
                                    Thomas Keller, of the French Laundry in Yountville, Calif., 
                                                      is among the chefs opposed to the state's coming ban on foie gras.
                                       
“We want to create a humane market,” said Rob Black, executive director of the Golden Gate Restaurant Association, a member of the coalition. “Not a black market.”
The ban would prohibit the production and sale of any product derived from force feeding birds to enlarge their livers beyond normal size — the only way to mass produce the fatty French-inflected delicacy. The law was passed in 2004 but had a seven-and-a-half-year grace period. It is the nation’s first such law to pass.Nate Ballard, a spokesman for the coalition, said that members planned to follow the statement with personal visits to legislators this week, taking them to supper, if they are interested.“The chefs are going to invite lawmakers to foie gras dinner in their districts, all over the state,” Mr. Ballard said.Regardless of one’s tastes in food, supporters of the ban have long argued that it is necessary to prevent cruelty to ducks and geese. They say the animals suffer physical and emotional damage from force feeding, a process known as gavage.“It’s not about foie gras,” said John Burton, a former California legislator who wrote the law. “It’s about inhumane treatment of those birds.”Of course, California is no stranger to food fights. In 2008, voters approved a ban on restrictive cages for veal cattle, pigs and hens, and last year Gov. Jerry Brown signed a law that forbade the sale or possession of shark fins, an Asian delicacy.The foie gras ban, signed by Mr. Brown’s predecessor, Arnold Schwarzenegger, has seemed to signal the end for Sonoma-Artisan Foie Gras, the state’s only producer, whose owner, Guillermo Gonzalez, said he would shut down on June 30.In the months leading up to the ban, restaurateurs have been increasingly vocal about their opposition.Greg Daniels, who runs Haven Gastropub in Pasadena, Calif., said he feared it could result in the diminishment of the state’s reputation as an adventurous and first-rate place to eat.“I think the culinary landscape of California will change much more than anybody is realizing,” Mr. Daniels said.That reputation is carried by the likes of Mr. Keller, whose flagship restaurant, the French Laundry in Yountville, Calif., is on the bucket list of many of the food obsessed. Last month, Mr. Keller issued a statement saying simply that his restaurant group would abide by the law when it took effect.But on Monday, Mr. Keller’s name was also among the more than 100 other chefs signing on to a raft of new promises regarding the production of foie gras, including a commitment to feeding methods that do not “harm the animal in any way.”All this seemed disingenuous to animal rights activists like Bryan Pease, a lawyer and founder of the Animal Protection and Rescue League, in San Diego, which has been protesting in front of restaurants where foie gras is still served, something he said was necessary to educate the public about the ban.“We want people to know it’s not this weird thing about banning duck liver,” he said. “It’s the force feeding that’s being targeted.”A version of this article appeared in print on May 1, 2012, on page A10 of the New York edition with the headline: California Chefs to Wield Their Spatulas in Fight Over Foie Gras Ban




 ↑Micrograph showing a fatty liver
                               

  
◎Stop Abusing Ducks and Geese - No more Foie Gras!

◎Stop foie gras!

 
Mercy For Animals conducted a harrowing undercover investigation in 2013 at Hudson Valley Foie Gras in New York, a supplier to Amazon. The investigation revealed workers violently grabbing ducks by their wings and necks and shoving metal pipes down their throats to force feed them, countless ducks hyperventilating from their unnaturally enlarged livers pressing against their lungs, and birds with open, bleeding wounds left to suffer without proper veterinary care. 
MFA is calling on Amazon, the world's largest online retailer, to follow the lead of companies such as Costco, Safeway, Target, Giant Eagle, Whole Foods Market, and Wolfgang Puck, and take a stand against this egregious animal abuse by prohibiting the sale of foie gras on its website.

Want to urge Amazon to do the right thing? Sign our petition now and let Amazon know that cruelty doesn't belong in anyone's shopping cart.

Speak Out Against  Amazon's Cruelty  http://www.amazoncruelty.com

MFA's Anti-Foie Gras Mobile Billboard Descends on Amazon's Headquarters http://www.mfablog.org/2014/03/mfas-mobile-billboard-descends-on-amazons-headquarters.html


Judge Rules to Keep California Ban on Force Feeding Ducks in Effect

A federal court in Los Angeles denied a group of restaurants and foie gras producers’ motion to block enforcement of California’s ban on force feeding ducks to produce foie gras. The ban was originally enacted in 2004 with the support of veterinarians and animal protection organizations including The Humane Society of the United States. It gave foie gras producers a seven year phase in period during which they could have worked out alternative ways of producing foie gras that do not involve the cruel but standard industry practice of shoving a pipe down the ducks’ throats to force them to consume far more than they would normally.
Instead of seeking alternatives, foie gras proponents sat on their hands for seven years waiting for the law to take effect and then filed suit. However, U.S. District Court Judge Stephen Wilson refused to prevent enforcement of the law while the merits of these claims are litigated.
The ruling on the plaintiffs’ preliminary injunction means that the law remains in effect and enforceable as the case proceeds to a final decision.
“No amount of legal maneuvering will change the fact that shoving pipes down birds’ throats to force them to consume vastly more than they would otherwise is grossly inhumane and unacceptable to the people of California,” said Jonathan Lovvorn, senior vice president of animal protection litigation for The Humane Society of the United States.
The case is Association des Eleveurs de Canards et d’Oies du Quebec v. Harris, 12-05735, U.S. District Court, Central District of California,Los Angeles.
Facts
  • Due to the inhumane treatment of the birds involved, more than a dozen countries, including the United Kingdom, Denmark, Finland, Germany and Israel (formerly the world’s fourth-largest foie gras producer), have either prohibited force feeding for foie gras production or have interpreted it as illegal under existing anti-cruelty laws.
  • Cities like Los Angeles, San Diego and San Francisco have passed resolutions condemning foie gras. Retailers such as Safeway, Costco, Target and Whole Foods Market refuse to sell it. More than a hundred California restaurateurs dropped foie gras from their menus voluntarily before the ban was in effect.
  • Renowned chef Wolfgang Puck sent a letter to nearly 5,000 fine dining restaurants in California earlier this year to explain why he supports the law. He wrote, “As a chef, a businessman, and someone who cares about the humane treatment of animals, I’m writing to let you know why I support this particular law, and why I hope you’ll give it your full support as well.”
More than a dozen countries have prohibited foie gras production. Wolfgang Puck doesn’t use foie gras, and many restaurants have removed it from their menus.
    • Write to George Eustice, and ask him to ban foie-gras imports to the UK.
      George Eustice
      Minister of State for Agriculture and Food
      Defra
      Nobel House
      17 Smith Square
      London SW1P 3JR
      helpline@defra.gsi.gov.uk (note: use this email address from now on. He does not have his own Ministerial address and emails will be sent back from his constituency address saying they will only answer constituency business. Put in email header: FAO George Eustice, Minister of State for Agriculture and Food re: foie-gras ban in Britain
      "Dear Minister
      I was shocked to discover that despite being illegal to produce in Britain because of cruelty, it is legal to import foie-gras into this country. Surely that makes a mockery of our sovereign welfare laws?
      Foie-gras is the grossly enlarged liver of a duck or goose and is essentially a disease, marketed as a delicacy. Birds raised for this 'gourmet' cruelty are force-fed enormous quantities of food through a long metal pipe, three times a day. This process of deliberate and painful overfeeding continues for up to a month by which time the birds' livers have swelled to ten times their normal size. Every year, around 38 million ducks are killed for foie-gras production in France. It is so violent that a million die during this period of force-feeding.
      This is not a small problem. Britain imports more foie-gras from France than Germany, Italy or Holland.
      I understand that the Government says that trade laws stop a ban on importation being considered. However, I urge you look at this urgently and take action to make Britain foie-gras free.
      Yours faithfully"

    CALIFORNIA FOIE GRAS BAN STILL STANDS

    Some foie gras producers and restaurateurs tried to block enforcement of California’s ban on force-feeding ducks, but a federal court ruled against them.
    LEARN MORE »

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