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The California foie gras ban


savvysearch
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Does anyone know if ban on the sale and production of foie gras in California after 2012 extends to imports? Could I still import it from NYC or France or from an internet grocery?

The ban is on the sale and production inside the state. Interstate commerce shouldn't be affected so you should still be able to order it from outside the state.

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  • 2 weeks later...
Does anyone know if ban on the sale and production of foie gras in California after 2012 extends to imports? Could I still import it from NYC or France or from an internet grocery?

The ban is on the sale and production inside the state. Interstate commerce shouldn't be affected so you should still be able to order it from outside the state.

Sorry, everyone. I completely forgot I posted this thread. Thanks for the replies. I do hope interstate commerce isn't affected, and I wonder how the quality will be importing it all the way from France. Although I think Canada also has a foie gras farm.

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The ban is on the sale and production inside the state.  ... you should still be able to order it from outside the state.
I wonder how the quality will be importing it all the way from France. Although I think Canada also has a foie gras farm.

To say nothing of the ban's underlying perversity (recalling US alcohol Prohibition of 1919-1933, which ultimately increased both average alcohol consumption and the number of its outlets). The Sonoma (California) farm targeted by this ban was known for more humane fat-poultry husbandry than standard European practice. (It's unnecessary to either force-feed or immobilize the birds to grow fat livers -- something they do anyway by themselves, storing energy seasonally -- yet those practices are the mantra of demagoguery against US foie gras production.)

Around 10 years ago, as fresh FG was becoming fashionable in California restaurants, professional cook friends dropped in on the Sonoma farm to see for themselves, when the animals were getting very fat. (No one I've heard from personally who denounces FG ever did that.) They reported their surprise at the realities. (The birds mobbed their feeder in a variant of Hitchcock's The Birds -- it was the feeder who warranted sympathy, if anyone -- and the birds appeared to be having a fine time.)

Ordering FG produced elsewhere would return to the norm before the current fresh-FG trend. In previous decades, much FG for US use came precooked and tinned, from Europe (with whatever poultry-feeding practices prevailed at its source).

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As a vegetarian and California resident, I can't say I'm really unhappy about the ban. I do think it’s true that this is a wedge issue (and one connected to luxury), much like fur — because most people don’t eat foie gras, and because most people who do are well-to-do, there is a certain amount of anti-elitism involved. I don't think you can entirely quantitatively compare suffering, but I think the argument has been made that in a lot of ways, animals in factory farms (both for meat, but also for egg and dairy production) are probably exposed to more total suffering in their lifetime than the ducks at most of the US based farms which produce foie gras. All that said, I still think that, whether or not gavage itself causes the animals undue stress, that force-feeding animals way past the point they'd gorge on food in nature is not a pleasant business, especially when it's in service of producing a luxury item which, while maybe enjoyable to many, is not really necessary in anyone's book.

I'd definitely recommend that anyone interested in the issues involved read Mark Caro's The Foie Gras Wars, which discusses the ban in Chicago, as well as the farms which produce it. I thought the book was well written and well-reasoned (though he ends up coming down more on the other side of the argument from me). Obviously it's a subject that people feel really strongly about (maybe more so than their actual like or dislike of foie itself).

Edited by Will (log)
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Same here. Bought this a few weeks ago (all deveined - I didn't know that was even available).

7264696130_88489bb34f_z.jpg

Went back this week to get this one (almost 1.5 lb!).

7252350120_4f350bbef9_z.jpg

I suspect I will buy more as the date approaches and I start to go in panic mode. :laugh:

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What really irks me is that a lot of us wrote letters to the "Govenator" begging him to not sign the darn thing. He did and I will bet anything that he has no problem having foie gras on his table...

"There are, it has been said, two types of people in the world. There are those who say: this glass is half full. And then there are those who say: this glass is half empty. The world belongs, however, to those who can look at the glass and say: What's up with this glass? Excuse me? Excuse me? This is my glass? I don't think so. My glass was full! And it was a bigger glass!" Terry Pratchett

 

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just noting that the gorgeous foie frogprincesse posted is a product of canada. until we californians get this thing overturned, i believe we can still obtain lovely-looking foie from there and ny and other areas.

"Laughter is brightest where food is best."

www.chezcherie.com

Author of The I Love Trader Joe's Cookbook ,The I Love Trader Joe's Party Cookbook and The I Love Trader Joe's Around the World Cookbook

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All that said, I still think that, whether or not gavage itself causes the animals undue stress, that force-feeding animals way past the point they'd gorge on food in nature is not a pleasant business,

Now if they did it for humans certain fast food companies woud be up S%$t creek without a paddle!

Time flies like an arrow, fruit flies like a banana.

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