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Gifted Gourmet

Banning foods .. what will be the next food to go?

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Banning anything is wrong in principle. If you don't agree with something, don't consume it. If you get enough people to not consume something, then they'll stop selling it. Why take away my freedom to choose?

I say less banning, more accepting.

Yes, lets let market forces deal w/ child pornography and slavery too.

You're putting foie gras production on the same level as slavery and kiddie porn? :blink:

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Agree with the statement: you can take apart just about any commercially grown animal and find some flaw in the raising process.?

Since the "process" ultimately ends in us killing the animal, it's hard to argue with the statement?

SB (so I try not to :blink: )

I think your statement is a non-sequitur. Like we, even though we dislike to admit it, everything that is alive will, eventually die. Many of these things will not only die, but be killed for their food. This is a simple fact that the food chain is a calorie funnel, and if you eat meat, you need a lot of pounds to make one pound of you.

So, many wildebeests feed a lion, but a lion feeds few.

Commericially grown animals, in the current paradigm of industrial food processing is a slightly different animal, but the truth is that were the animals raised in a more "natural" environment, they would still die.

And, a killing floor's knock-gun is more humane (does that apply to animals that aren't human, really? And, even so, isn't it just a social construct?) than how a pack of wolves would bring down a bull or a cow? Recall that steers don't exist naturally.

I think this protest is more a product of people thinking that you get food from the grocery store. They are completely divorced from the food production process. It's really sad.

But, on a wonderful note, I found morels in my lawn last night! Yay!


I always attempt to have the ratio of my intelligence to weight ratio be greater than one. But, I am from the midwest. I am sure you can now understand my life's conundrum.

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Agree with the statement: you can take apart just about any commercially grown animal and find some flaw in the raising process.?

Since the "process" ultimately ends in us killing the animal, it's hard to argue with the statement?

SB (so I try not to :blink: )

I think your statement is a non-sequitur. Like we, even though we dislike to admit it, everything that is alive will, eventually die. Many of these things will not only die, but be killed for their food. This is a simple fact that the food chain is a calorie funnel, and if you eat meat, you need a lot of pounds to make one pound of you.

So, many wildebeests feed a lion, but a lion feeds few.

Commericially grown animals, in the current paradigm of industrial food processing is a slightly different animal, but the truth is that were the animals raised in a more "natural" environment, they would still die.

We could easily resolve the moral dilema by waiting until an animal dies of natural causes before we eat it? Then we could pride ourselves on being morally superior to the rapacious carnivoures in nature and align ourselves with the creatures who perform a public service by keeping the landscape clean and sanitary. This would be impractical though, let alone unappetizing. :sad:

And, a killing floor's knock-gun is more humane (does that apply to animals that aren't human, really?  And, even so, isn't it just a social construct?) than how a pack of wolves would bring down a bull or a cow?

If we can inject a "humane" argument into the debate, how about a "human" perspective? In criminal law a key element in the determination of guilt is intent. I doubt that the care and attention we lavished upon a domesticated animal would win us much sympathy from a jury of its peers if the prosecutor established that our primary motive was to kill and eat it! :shock:

Recall that steers don't exist naturally.

You mean the steer breeding ranch I invested in is just a scam! :laugh:

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The post by Jamie Maw (#349) in this thread would provides information about the production of foie gras in Canada (some is imported to the US).  There is another post elsewhere about a California operation that I couldn't find in my quick search.

Anne: Thank you for alerting me to this informative, well-written post. I urge others who have not read it to do so.

Jamie is an excellent writer and very witty (oops, wasn't supposed to reveal the existence of this mutual admiration society :wink: ...), but one sentence in the essay leaped out at me:

...an item for Robb Report readers to add to their iconic lists like a vertical of Petrus, the lists that speak to excess cash flow seeking social validation...

I think that some time way, way back when, back when Chicago's foie gras ban was just a crazy idea in the fevered brain of some alderman, I posited that much of this activism is actually an expression of class envy or a protest against Gilded Age-like excess, said excess being in abundant supply of late.

There are so many conflicting currents in this whole affair that I have a hard time sorting them all out.

There is the class resentment angle just mentioned.

There is the real issue of humane treatment of animals, for after reading Jamie's post, I too would think twice before ordering foie--and his post demonstrated that there are ways of producing foie that are more respectful of the animals who will be sacrificed for it.

There is the slippery-slope argument ("When they came for the foie gras, I did not speak up, for I ate no foie. When they came for the lobster, I did not speak up, for I ate no lobster. When they came for the veal, I did not speak up, for I ate no veal. But when they came for my shoes, there was no one left to speak up for me"). I too believe that this will not work out in practice because the number of people who enjoy cheap chicken and eggs as the result of inhumane practices is far, far greater than the number who enjoy veal or foie thereby. But that doesn't mean that the slope is not there.

And there's hypocrisy enough for all of us to feast on the stuff for the rest of the year.

Maybe we should just let everyone be and come up with some sort of certification process whereby the buyer is assured that the foie he is about to consume was produced in as humane a manner as possible.


Sandy Smith, Exile on Oxford Circle, Philadelphia

"95% of success in life is showing up." --Woody Allen

My foodblogs: 1 | 2 | 3

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I think this protest is more a product of people thinking that you get food from the grocery store.  They are completely divorced from the food production process.  It's really sad.

But, on a wonderful note, I found morels in my lawn last night!  Yay!

First part of quote: If people thought merely that you get food from the grocery store--or the restaurant kitchen--they wouldn't have any problems with eating foie gras.

Second part: Now what exactly did you do to your lawn to entice it to produce those morels?

About those morels: Have you killed them yet?


Edited by Pontormo (log)

"Viciousness in the kitchen.

The potatoes hiss." --Sylvia Plath

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I have not read long explanations about the way foie gras is produced.  I just know what I've been told.  It sounds dreadful, like prolonged torture.  Am I the only one who is troubled by this?

The post by Jamie Maw (#349) in this thread would provides information about the production of foie gras in Canada (some is imported to the US). There is another post elsewhere about a California operation that I couldn't find in my quick search.

Anne: Thank you for alerting me to this informative, well-written post. I urge others who have not read it to do so.

Another writing on foie gras production is in the book: From Here, You Can't See Paris by Michael Sanders.

A quote from the Amazon.com book description:

From Here, You Can't See Paris is a sweet, leisurely exploration of the life of Les Arques (population 159), a hilltop village in a remote corner of France, untouched by the modern era. It is a story of a dying village's struggle to survive, of a dead artist whose legacy began its rebirth, and of chef Jacques Ratier and his wife, Noëlle, whose bustling restaurant -- the village's sole business -- has helped ensure its future.

The author set out to explore the inner workings of a French restaurant kitchen but ended up stumbling onto a wider, much richer world. Whether uncovering the darker secrets of making foie gras, hearing a chef confess his doubts about the Michelin star system, or absorbing the lore of the land around a farmhouse kitchen table after a boar hunt, Michael Sanders learned that life in Les Arques was anything but sleepy.


Cheers,

Anne

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Second part:  Now what exactly did you do to your lawn to entice it to produce those morels?

About those morels:  Have you killed them yet?

Umm for the first question, I moved in with a girl.

Second question: no, but I did remove its sex organs, and I plan on cooking them and eating them. I'm a heartless bastard. I'll probably serve them with the mountain oysters I have in my freezer, and maybe some edible flowers, too.

I'll just eat sex, sex, sex someday soon.


I always attempt to have the ratio of my intelligence to weight ratio be greater than one. But, I am from the midwest. I am sure you can now understand my life's conundrum.

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I'll respond from the media side, because most of the people involved in this controversy do not even know the basics. I was contacted for the "pro" view by my station to do an interview with a vetrinarian from W. Virginia who was the leading "con," with the scare tactics and untrue statements. He made the statement, during our news story in the 6pm news broadcast here in San Francisco on ABC affiliate "KGO," that the geese's stomachs were being stuffed which was tantamount to farmers being terrorist. I asked him how long he had been a vetrinarian and he said "17 years." I said first of all Dr., "Geese do not have a stomach, they have an esophagus, which can expand, when filled, to 1 & 1/2 times their body weight. From there it goes through the "gizzard," which grinds, like teeth, into the duodenal loop which is a medium and smaller intestine. Geese in their natural environment will land in a corn field and gorge their "gullet," themselves by eating so much that they'll not even be able to fly until they process the corn through the gizzard. So now you know the technical side, so to speak, and in the history of foie gras, it has been produced for over 5,000 years. So when the press showed a black and white film from 1953 showing a producer shoving feed down the neck into the esophagus, people were aghast. The process does NOT hurt the goose as they will eat until they cannot move in a natural environment anyway. If you want to look at what is "cruel," in this process is that the goose is force fed, in a pen, for two weeks before slaughtering, without exercise, to "fatten it's liver." If you want to get this country up in Arms, please ask a typical "Chicken Processor," to show everyone how these high speed cutters in the slaugtering room where 500,000 chicken are killed daily, just by one producer, here in California. That process is FAR, more cruel, than stuffing an expandable "E Gullet."

Would we stop eating chicken if we saw how they are "killed by a spinning knife?"

I eat both chicken and Foie Gras and I sleep well.

In my opinion the fanatics that move PETA have virtually become economic terrorists in that they seek to destroy the livelihood of a great many people.

In Australia they promoted a boycott of wool, attempting to destroy an entire economy. 

I do wish that someone with a media voice would stand up and get the message across that if PETA has its way, it will mean the extinction of hundreds, if not thousands, of species.

If farmers are not allowed to raise and sell animals, fowl, etc., for slaughter, for dairy, for eggs or whatever else they produce, who do they think is going to pay to maintain those animals.  They aren't pets.  You can't keep domestic cows without milking them, once they have been bred, they now produce far too much milk for a single calf.  It is painful for them to be left with full udders.

The original purpose of PETA was to be a watchdog against truly cruel treatment of animals.  However, in the years I served with the California Humane council, I never saw a PETA member accompany us when we raided places where dog fighting was done and I am pretty sure none every helped rescue fowl at one of the cock-fighting farms.  Likewise, a friend who works at LAX says they could use volunteers for inspecting for smuggled birds, snakes, and any endangered species coming in from overseas but PETA is not interested.  They could also help stop the horrible smuggling of very young and often sick puppies from Mexico.

Perhaps if a few headlines got the message across that PETA seems to be advocating the extinction of all domestic animals, they would have far less support, particularly with the Hollywood set who seem to be a bit dense when it comes to seeing through the smoke-screens PETA uses to obscure their real objectives.

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chefmarc, you got it in one!

I grew up on a farm in Kentucky and we had geese, ducks, guinea fowl as well as chickens plus swans, "game" birds, pheasant, quail, partridge and three varieties of turkeys. If ostrich had been available back then we would probably have had those also.

Geese and ducks, as well as the wild turkeys, will gorge in preparation for migration. It is a natural, instinctive process.

It is interesting that when the feeder goes to the pens, the geese or ducks run to meet him or her. If they were being abused, they would run away. However the idiots who want to stop the business, are totally ignorant of the facts and don't want to hear them.

As I mentioned in my earlier post, they don't do anything about truly horrible conditions, the dog auctions where animals (often stolen pets) are sold in job lots to people who breed them on puppy "farms" or to breeders of fighting dogs who need "bait" to train their dogs.

Like the eco-terrorists who set SUVs on fire and did more damage to the enviornment than running the vehicles for ten years would ever have done, they are not rational people.

The last time I had a discussion (argument) with one of the PETA demonstrators at the L.A. zoos. I asked her why they weren't going after the puppy mills that keep dogs in horrible conditions and the answer I got was that it wasn't NEWS!

They seem to want to make headlines rather than actually get out and work for real animal welfare.

The sad thing is that there are so many ignorant people, particularly in the entertainment industry, who believe their line of BS, all the time driving around in their cars with leather upholstry and in one case I witnessed, a blond "celebrity" tripping along in her alligator cowboy boots after announcing on camera she had given 10 grand to PETA.


"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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Oh, Chicago leads the way, again!

On NPR this morning, Ald. Ed Burke (who was behind the no hand held cell phones whilst driving ordinance) is now proposing to ban other "distracting" driving behaviors--most notably, coffee drinking.

One can get around the cell phone thing with a blue tooth or something to that effect, but how do we get around drinking coffee without hands?

In the spirit of eliminating distractions while driving, I think Chicago should provide a car (with privacy glass) and driver to ferry my small children around. It is very difficult to give my full concentration to the road while listening to their babbles and squabbles. If someone else drove them. then I could enjoy my coffee safely at home and not endanger other drivers. :wink:


S. Cue

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Oh, Chicago leads the way, again!

On NPR this morning, Ald. Ed Burke (who was behind the no hand held cell phones whilst driving ordinance) is now proposing to ban other "distracting" driving behaviors--most notably, coffee drinking.

One can get around the cell phone thing with a blue tooth or something to that effect, but how do we get around drinking coffee without hands?

]

Of course thats the same Ed Burke who expressed the idea that the voting company Sequoia industries will engage in vote rigging in an attempt to overthrow the American government because it is owned by a Venezuelan company. The fact that the ceo of Diebold, the major vote tallyer (I have no idea for the ocrrect word for this), promised Bush the electoral votes for Ohio months before the 2004 election, however does not worry Burke at all apparently.

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... "Geese do not have a stomach, they have an esophagus, which can expand,  when filled, to 1 & 1/2 times their body weight. From there it goes through the "gizzard," which grinds, like teeth, into the duodenal loop which is a medium and smaller intestine. Geese in their natural environment will land in a corn field and gorge their "gullet," themselves by eating so much that they'll not even be able to fly until they process the corn through the gizzard....

Great information, thanks!

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