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French farmers upset over California's foie gras ban

Posted at 10:28 PM, Jan 17, 2019

Last week, the United States Supreme Court declined to hear an appeal on a 2012 California ban of foie gras, a food made by force-feeding grain to ducks or geese, causing the liver to fatten and nearly explode.

The making of foie gras, which is considered a rare delicacy, has come under fire by animal-rights activists, claiming the practice of force-feeding ducks and geese is inhumane.

According to Reuters, farmers in France, where 70 percent of the world's foie gras is produced, are upset with California's ban on the product. Violating the law could cause a $1,000 fine.

One farmer in France told Reuters that he was not harming the animals by fattening their livers.

“I really look after them because, like I said, that’s how I make a living. If I don’t look after them I don’t have any money at the end of the month, I can’t pay my bills — so there’s nothing to be gained for me in mistreating the animals," Julien, a farmer in Montaut, told Reuters.

Some chefs in California have also expressed disappointment over California's ban. But chefs said they'll adapt the ban.

“I’ve been cooking foie for many years — I love to make terrines with it — but everything changes,” chef Tony Esnault told the Los Angeles Times . “It’s not the end of the world."

“So while I will personally miss the ingredient and the dish, I don’t love the controversy around it. I think food should be a unifier amongst us, not something that makes us fight or tears us apart," chef Tim Hollingsworth told the Times.

While some were not happy by the ban, PETA celebrated the Supreme Court's decision not to review the ban.

"This victory for animals follows tireless efforts from animal rights activists to oppose the archaic foie gras industry. PETA and our supporters have protested the sale of the vile product in California for years by exposing the industry’s cruel production process and advising consumers to eat readily available vegan faux gras instead," PETA said in a statement.