Foie Gras To Be Banned In California | Are you nuts?!

20 posts / 0 new
Last post
Jacob Burton
Jacob Burton's picture
Offline
Joined: 11/01/2010
Stella Stars: 17890
Foie Gras To Be Banned In California | Are you nuts?!
So my friend Zalbar posted a link to a Businessweek article the other day about a ban on of foie gras that is set to take effect next year in California. You can find the original article here: http://www.businessweek.com/magazine/in-california-foie-gras-will-soon-b...

We just did an update to Stella Culinary and unfortunately the post was lost, so I'm reposting the link now.

The thing that really pisses me off about the whole situation is the "knee-jerk" reactions by supposed "do gooders" who jump on the animal rights bandwagon. I grew up with animals, in farm country, and as a chef, I've toured many live stock farms to see where the proteins I serve in my restaurant are produced. Bottom line, the better an animal is cared for, the better it will taste; it's that simple. Not to mention, when an animal is raised in humane conditions, it is less likely to get my customers sick. An obvious no brainer.

I buy my foie gras from Sonoma Foie Gras, which is one of the cleanest and most humane live stock farms you could ever wish to visit. If you want to truly be disgusted by animal cruelty, go visit a large scale chicken farm; and by the way, the only reason I don't name names, is because these same large scale chicken farms have a huge legal budget to sue people like me; which would obviously be better spent producing chickens who aren't raised in stacked cages, in the dark, with the chickens above them shitting on their heads.

True story: I had a friend in the central valley of California and one of his first jobs was to walk around one of these large chicken farms to pick up dead chickens by using the pointed end of a sharpened stick. THIS WAS A FULL TIME JOB, 40 HOURS A WEEK, AND YES, SOME WEEKS HE EVEN ACCRUED OVERTIME!

The same thing goes for beef. We have "animal rights activists" trying to put artisan family farmers out of business. They will literally threaten chef's and their families for serving foie gras and picket their restaurants, but oddly, they have nothing to say about mass produced cattle who are shot up with all sorts of antibiotics so they won't kill consumers.....because......they're raised in unsanitary swamps of SHIT! Literally!

So yeah, I'm pissed. But don't take my word for it. Please, read the following letter from an avian veterinarian who I GUARANTEE has more knowledge and understanding then the most adamant hipster animal activist who is too pompous to do any research before they hop on their shiny new "Coffee Shop Cause."

http://www.artisanfoiegras.com/articles/DrSmith.pdf
__________________

Cook With Passion!
 

labradors
labradors's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/16/2011
Stella Stars: 3208
Oh, the things I could say about such legislation and government control, but they would probably ignite a firestorm of political flame throwing.

Suffice it to say that people continue to try to evade the responsibilities and consequences of their actions, including the consequences of their votes, then they're surprised when this kind of thing continues to happen.

I'll say no more about this, but I hope I haven't already said too much.
__________________

"Cooking is three things: passion, passion and passion." -- Samantha Vallejo-Nágera - MasterChef España

BrianShaw
Offline
Joined: 05/19/2011
Stella Stars: 972
Yes, this foie gras ban has been in the works for quite a while. 

Similar ban on shark fins... but I don't know if there is anything like a humane source of shark fins.  The Chinese will likely be pushing back on that ban based on cultural discrimination.

We had to live with a "adamant hipster animal activist", a parent at our child's school, who constantly tormented us about what our kids were eating but at least she was vegetarian, wore no leather, and still drove an old AMC Gremlin (which seemed odd because it belched nasty smelling exhaust and it is well known that newer cars are more emission-free).  After "getting her way" and having donuts, cupcakes, etc banned from the 2nd grade birthday parties she left the school in anger.  Go figure.
messychef24
messychef24's picture
Offline
Joined: 07/06/2011
Stella Stars: 226
I'll be the first to admit, when I learned how foie gras was made, i was a little disgusted, but of course that was off some PETA sponsored website where they literally find the lowest of the lowlifes and cast them as the "typical." While the honest farmers demands for their plea of innocence are ignored.
Any Vegan/Vegetarian who tries to force their ways on other people should just be ignored as a natural protocol for the "ridiculous."
THE PEOPLE SHOULD NOT BE OPPRESSED FROM EXPERIENCING THE WONDER THAT IS FOIE GRAS!!!!
__________________

Out of chaos and madness out of experimentation, comes progress. 
Out of the mess comes perfection.

Nina
Nina's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/14/2011
Stella Stars: 3763
@Jacob & Labs,  you guys are right on the money.  If you choose not to eat certain foods, or drive, or wear certain things... well, fine.  But to create laws so that no one in the land can do these things!!!??? WTF!!! and tomorrow it will be one more freedom, then one more and so on.  This must be stopped!  I love Foie Gras, yeah, and veal too!! 
  Jacob, you have FB fans and You Tube, and this site as well as other kitchen & chef & farm friends, is there anything that you can think of to stop this? Please let me know if I can help.  Not much gets me angry, but injustice is one of them.
__________________

The only time to eat diet food is while you're waiting for the steak to cook.”
Julia Child  

Jacob Burton
Jacob Burton's picture
Offline
Joined: 11/01/2010
Stella Stars: 17890
@ Nina,

Thanks for the offer of support. I'm not sure what type of action I will be taking, but I really have no desire to turn Stella Culinary into a political movement. In the mean time, the best thing we can do is educate or friends, family members and customers in a patient and understanding fashion. I truly believe that if more people knew the actual facts of this story, opinions would be much different. There are a lot of misconceptions about the production of foie gras and it is our responsibility to have factual answers to the emotional fallacies being spread.
Nina
Nina's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/14/2011
Stella Stars: 3763
I understand your position Jacob, you are a chef not a politician, however word needs to get out.  I just posted an article on FB about this.  Please write about it on your FB  page so that I can pass it along.  This isn't about animal cruelty, nor is it about healthy eating.  If it were they would go after chicken and turkey farmers, or they would go after people who make Scrapple or Spam.  This is just about power over you in the guise of do gooders, and it's wrong!

Wisconsin Limey
What about a BYOFG policy?  

I bring my own, mail ordered, Foie Gras and you supply a smokin' hot sizzle platter...Oh what the hey, I'll just stay home and enjoy it. 

How many people actually eat FG at home?  Nobody?  So I guess we don't need to eat it out.  It is only eaten on occasion and in small amounts as it is definitely not health food!

Have you tried deep fried butter on a stick?  Me neither!

It seems to me that if the problem is the mistreatment of ducks and geese then the mistreaters should be punished, not restauranteurs!   Deal with the problem California (and Chicago!)
GreenBake
GreenBake's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/15/2011
Stella Stars: 3800
For an interesting TED talk on the subject, watch the following video: http://www.ted.com/talks/dan_barber_s_surprising_foie_gras_parable.html I believe it may also still be available in iTunes
Nina
Nina's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/14/2011
Stella Stars: 3763
Greenbake, thanks for the link,  I loved it.

@ Limey, If I must I will BYOFG!  Hahaha
GreenBake
GreenBake's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/15/2011
Stella Stars: 3800
So now that it’s 2012-01-01... is this ban in effect?

Or did it get overturned or never got passed/signed? The article mentioned July, but don’t many of laws have a January 1st date?
Jacob Burton
Jacob Burton's picture
Offline
Joined: 11/01/2010
Stella Stars: 17890
Nope, it's still set for July. I'm going to bring back my lobster-foie napoleon and shoot a video on the completed dish and also a foie torchon video before the ban goes into effect.
Jacobite
Jacobite's picture
Offline
Joined: 06/20/2011
Stella Stars: 1143
" So now it's 2012..............."

Does anyone know if  Eduardo Sousa's techniques have been adopted to any extent?
__________________

Brian. I'll eat anything that doesn't eat me first.

GreenBake
GreenBake's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/15/2011
Stella Stars: 3800
I can’t find the Dan Barber story of Eduardo Sousa on iTunes anymore, but it can still be found at http://www.ted.com/talks/dan_barber_s_surprising_foie_gras_parable.html
GreenBake
GreenBake's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/15/2011
Stella Stars: 3800
I haven’t seen anything. Apparently Eduardo Sousa’s technique is not so easy to reproduce. The geese have to believe they are not in captivity, it appears. Hard to do when they are in captivity.
AlanF
Chicago over-turned the foie gras ban some years ago. 

http://dinersjournal.blogs.nytimes.com/2008/05/14/chicago-overturns-foie...
GreenBake
GreenBake's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/15/2011
Stella Stars: 3800

Have you shot the videos yet?

GreenBake
GreenBake's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/15/2011
Stella Stars: 3800

I have searched... and searched... and searched... but no word on a certification process that has been used to allow the sale of Foie Gras in California.

 

Has anyone else found a certification that is being looked at to allow the sale? Just checking in...

GreenBake
GreenBake's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/15/2011
Stella Stars: 3800

Does anyone know if the ban includes using foie gras as an ingredient (such as in burgers, pasta, etc.)?

Jacob Burton
Jacob Burton's picture
Offline
Joined: 11/01/2010
Stella Stars: 17890

Yes, the ban includes restaurants serving foie gras in any form. Because of this, I no longer add foie to my duck pate mix.

Please register or login to post a comment.