Call For a Foie Gras Sale and Importation Ban

The production of foie gras – a pâté made from the diseased liver of force-fed ducks and geese – is so horrendous that it’s illegal in the UK. So why is this vile food still being imported and sold here?

Update: 14 March 2022
Recent reports in the media alarmingly suggest that the government will de-prioritise animal welfare, claiming it is seen as “peripheral stuff” . This means that the Animal Welfare (Kept Animals) and Animals Abroad bills are at risk of being dropped. If that happened, we’d lose proposed laws banning the importation and sale of foie gras – made from the diseased and swollen liver stolen from a force-fed goose or duck. While the world faces unprecedented challenges, promises to implement vital animal welfare legislation must be upheld and the government must fulfil its commitment to having and promoting the highest standards of animal welfare, as laid out in the 2021 Queen’s Speech. 

If the reports are true and these bills are torn up, the government would be betraying the geese and ducks it promised to protect as well as the public who elected it based on manifesto commitments such as banning hunting trophies and live export.

Giving the green light to organisations and individuals to continue to profit from cruelty to animals would make a mockery of the UK’s claim that we are a nation of animal lovers. The government must keep in mind a sentiment put forth by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, “The way we treat animals reflects our values and the kind of people we are.” 

Please take action now by telling the government to support the Animal Welfare (Kept Animals) and Animals Abroad bills in their entirety, banning foie gras.

Original post:

To produce foie gras, ducks and geese are force-fed several times a day until their livers become diseased and swell to around 10 times their natural size. Imagine being forced to eat 20 kilograms of pasta each day. That’s the human equivalent of the nearly 2 kilograms of food that’s typically forced down these birds’ throats every single day.

PETA exposés have revealed that the long metal feeding pipes leave some birds so badly injured that they have holes in their necks, broken beaks, and oesophagitis. By the end of their short lives, many birds are unable to walk normally, suffer from bone disease, or even struggle to breathe because their enlarged livers compress their lungs.

Help Ducks and Geese

The overwhelming majority of Brits – 79% – want to see a ban on the importation of foie gras. The government has acknowledged how cruel its production is, and in its 2021 Action Plan for Animal Welfare committed to “building a clear evidence base to inform decisions on banning the import or sale of foie gras”. But this isn’t good enough. Now that the UK has left the European single market, policymakers have an opportunity to acknowledge the public’s distaste for this vile product and close our borders to this inhumane and barbaric trade – and they must seize it!

Tell the government to ban the importation and sale of foie gras in the UK immediately.

 

The Rt Hon George Eustice MP

Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

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Dear Minister:

I am completely opposed to the immense suffering inflicted on ducks and geese to produce foie gras. I strongly urge you to ban UK imports and sales of this “torture in a tin”.

Foie gras is a notoriously vile food for which birds are condemned to such intense suffering that its production is illegal in the UK and more than a dozen other countries. However, around 180 to 200 tonnes of this product are still imported into the UK each year.

To produce foie gras, ducks and geese are force-fed several times a day until their livers become diseased and swollen to up to 10 times their natural size. By the end of their short lives, many birds have trouble breathing because their enlarged livers compress their lungs. This is why the EU’s own Scientific Committee on Animal Health and Animal Welfare recommends that “force-feeding of ducks and geese should stop and this could be best achieved by the prohibition of the production, importation, distribution and sale of foie gras”.

We should close our borders to this cruel trade. A ban would reflect the view of the overwhelming majority of Brits – 79% – who want to see an end to imports of foie gras.

By making the decision to stop importing and selling this vile product, the UK would close the loophole that currently allows a food whose production is so cruel that it cannot take place here to remain on our shelves – and become a world leader in animal protection.

Sincerely,

 

   

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